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How to Begin the Process of Bringing Furloughed Employees Back to Work

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How to Begin the Process of Bringing Furloughed Employees Back to Work

The coronavirus pandemic created an extraordinary economic downturn that forced businesses to furlough workers in staggering numbers. These layoffs were necessary to help their organizations cut costs temporarily. 

Now the economy is showing signs of recovery, and it’s an opportunity to bring many of them back. Although some jobs might not return, it looks as if many workers will be recalled over the next weeks and months. 

If your company is one of the many that will be ending a furlough soon, here are a few suggestions to consider: 

Bringing back furloughed workers signals the end to some of the darkest and most frightening days in recent memory. As such, it’s a cause for celebration. But don’t forget there is a proper procedure for the recall process, and that starts with an official recall letter to each worker who will be brought back. 

What should you include in a furlough recall letter?

Your workers will have plenty of questions. In addition to giving them all the pertinent facts, use the letter to update and reassure them about what has changed, if anything, about their place in the company. Tell them about their salary and benefits, and explain how you will be ensuring their safety in the workplace. 

An Offer of Employment 

Remember, you are sending your furloughed employees an offer of employment. They may have found another job or merely decided not to come back, so it’s essential to give them an option of whether or not to return. 

Return-to-work date 

Let them know the date that they are to return to work. 

Terms of Employment 

They need to know that this letter replaces any former terms of employment, so give them all the details: 

    • Position 
    • Supervisor 
    • Job Description
    • Salary 
    • Hours 

What Has Changed and What Stays the Same 

Inform them of any changes to their terms of employment, even if they seem minor. Changing things without telling them could lead to bad feelings. Be clear about them, especially if the changes involve wages and hours. 

Benefits Status 

Your workers will want to know how the recall has affected their seniority, benefits, and any accrued paid time off and sick leave. 

New Safety Procedures 

The furlough might be over, but the crisis remains. Employees should work from home if at all possible. And that’s not possible, let them know how you intend to keep them safe in the workplace. Consider the following: 

    • Enforcing social distancing 
    • Frequent disinfection of common surfaces 
    • Scheduled handwashing 
    • Reducing customer capacity 
    • Staggered shifts 

Reassure them 

During this time of anxiety and stress, one of the best things you can offer returning workers is an open-door policy that gives them the chance to talk to you privately with any questions and concerns. 

Let us help you replace furloughed workers who didn’t return.

Contact Pro Resources for the light industrial or technical/professional help you need. We’ve been in business for over 30 years, so we will use our expertise to help you find your next worker.