Unfortunately for many businesses across Australia the COVID-19 lock-downs has meant less work, forced leave and even laying staff off. However, if there is one thing the COVID-19 crisis has brought to light, it’s the businesses that have gone the extra mile by offering financial security to their employees, coming up with solutions and business adaptations to keep the doors open and the wages paid. When things return to normal, and you are looking for your next job, it is these businesses that rose up during the difficult times, that you’ll want to send your resume to.
Businesses who have supported their staff during COVID-19
We’ve seen some of these businesses for ourselves; with some of our clients who have had to close their offices or retail spaces asking their cleaners to continue cleaning the sites to help keep them going throughout this tough time, despite the locations being completely empty of staff.
It’s not just our beautiful clients that are going the extra mile, here’s what a few other organisations are up to:
- Microsoft have continued to pay more than 4,500 casual employees who are usually paid by the hour, whether or not their full services are still required.
- Google has organised a COVID-19 global fund for all their temporary vendors and employees to take paid sick leave if they are displaying any symptoms of Coronavirus or if they are required to self-quarantine and unable to work.
- Melbourne florist Victoria Whitelaw pivoted from flower deliveries to contact-less local food deliveries, dubbed The Veggie Box by Victoria Whitelaw. The boxes contain fresh, high end and locally sourced produce (fruit, veggies, pantry and fridge essentials), meaning she’s also supporting fellow local businesses alongside the 26 people she employs.
- Uber announced that they would be offering 14 days paid sick leave to their drivers who would regularly be considered as independent contractors and not eligible for paid sick leave or benefits.
One Aussie business who has gone the extra mile for their employees
One especially lovely story we came across hails from Afea Care Services. Afea Care Services provide in-home care, helping some of the most at-risk people stay isolated from larger group environments where the risk of catching COVID-19 is significantly increased. Carers working for Afea Care services are delivering groceries, cleaning and supporting people with limited mobility and other health concerns, to keep their lives running and to provide some social contact throughout the isolation period.
The company itself is supporting their carers through a time of great financial unease, kicking off with an announcement there will not be any lay-offs – stating their employees are family and they’ll be doing everything in their power to maintain the jobs of their 500+ staff.
Afea have also publicly announced that they are offering their staff (among other measures):
- A free influenza vaccine
- Extra personal protective equipment (PPE) for carers
- Increased training (and strict adherence to all isolation requirements set by the government) and communication with clients and their representatives asking them to practice safe hygiene for themselves and their carers to prevent spreading COVID-19
- Extra measures are being implemented to call clients ahead of face-to-face meetings to assess whether they are safe to visit and when possible using an alternative way of checking in with clients such as phone or video conferencing.
When the COVID-19 lock-downs are lifted who do you want to work for?
As the COVID-19 lock-downs are lifted and society starts to return to normal, businesses who had to reduce their workforce or put a freeze on new hires will start to look for people to fill vacancies. If you are one of the many people who will be looking for work or even just looking to change jobs, it is the employers who took care of their employees in a time of crisis that you’ll want to hand your resume in at. Conversely, those that have treated their employees poorly through the crisis are unlikely to land on any ‘preferred employer’ lists. Next time you’re going for a job, you may want to do your research into your potential future employer to understand just how they take care of their employees!