Recent college graduates reveal that they wish they'd had more networking and computer software skills training, according to skills gap research by Gallup, which also found business majors reported a lack of practical skills training. All of the skill gaps findings could explain why fewer Americans view college education as very important than in 2013, says Gallup.
Early benefits of working from home are wearing off, and employees need help from managers in creating new structures and connections while staying energized, writes Jim Haudan. "And since working from home doesn't seem to be going anywhere, the sooner we master leading in this physically distant world, the better for us all," he writes.
A report from Yale University argues that enhanced unemployment benefits do not have a negative effect on employment, Jim Wang writes. The report -- based on data that does not reflect the full US labor market and focuses on hourly workers -- states that people who received the expanded benefits returned to their jobs at the same rate as others, Wang notes.
To survive the economic disruptions of the coronavirus, 20% of small businesses have laid off or plan to lay off employees after using up the PPP loans, according to a survey by the National Federation of Independent Business. "Come October, if everything stays the same, there's really no chance we'll be able to operate," says restaurant co-owner Bonnie Morales.
As more workplaces go remote, managers are worried about employee productivity and because they can't see workers in the office anymore, they could become virtual micromanagers. Some signs of micromanagement include constantly asking for reports, over-scheduling, unnecessary monitoring and giving inflexible instructions, writes remote work strategist Laurel Farrer.
A Cornell University survey indicates that employers rehired laid-off workers in large part because of Paycheck Protection Program funding, but a lack of follow-up federal legislation is leading to a new wave of layoffs. The survey found that of workers laid off and rehired, 31% have been laid off again.
Companies need written policies on employee mask use that are communicated widely and have management backing. "The biggest thing is to acknowledge their feelings and say, 'I understand how you feel, but we have the responsibility to do business the right way,'" says Randy Potts, HR manager for Rent-2-Own.
Help managers supervise remote employees by encouraging surveys and remote mentoring and making sure they know how to handle performance problems, writes Esther Langdon, an employment lawyer at Vedder Price. "How does HR support and partner managers, both regularly and in sensitive issues?" Langdon writes.
OCBC Bank has offered technical classes, exercise programs and other engagement and learning programs during the pandemic, says company official Yap Aye Wee. "We themed our weekly specials: for example, The Fostering Wellness series," she says.
Office reopenings can be made safer by staggering employee returns, disinfecting regularly and installing quality air filters, and discouraging gatherings in common areas, write Diane Karsch and The Boreland Group CEO Jennefer Witter. "Leaders should set the tone by modeling appropriate behavior, such as wearing masks, regularly washing their hands, and maintaining distance," they write.