Bringing back furloughed employees is a time of celebration, both for the employee and for the company, but there is a right and a wrong way to do this.
Amanda Herring, our Chief Experience Officer, tackles this to ensure the organization and the employee experience an empathetic transition to set the stage for a successful future together.
"In bringing back furloughed employees, I cannot understate the importance of considering the mental health factor. It's a substantial challenge for this population to have been out of touch, not knowing what's changed in the business, what life moments they've missed among their colleagues, what the organization thinks or has been told about their departure and return, etc.
In coming back together, there's a great opportunity to re-onboard furloughed employees, offering them a shared state of understanding with information about what's stayed the same, what's changed, and what they can expect for the future." As part of their re-onboarding, they can also be paired with a go-to person who can help guide them through the process. As part of this process, more one-on-one meetings never hurt either.
The most common mistake employers make when bringing back furloughed employees is neglecting communication - specifically communication with empathy. No matter how large or small, these employees deserve to hear from their leadership, the CEO if possible, with an acknowledgment and appreciation of what they just went through. Then, communicating to both employees who were furloughed and employees who stayed covering frequently asked questions: what happened, what's happening now, and where to go with questions or feedback.
The kindest thing an employer can do for furloughed employees is offering a reset, welcoming them back into a considerate space that acknowledges where we've been and now, together, where we'll be able togo."
Learn more about Amanda's insights over at Lattice with Deanna deBara.