Skillsoft Blog

Why Reboarding Your Employees Post-Pandemic Makes Sense

July 2, 2021 | by Donna McEntee


With vaccination rates on the rise and new cases of COVID-19 falling, the world is beginning to see shifting employer-employee work arrangements. Employees are beginning to return to physical work locations -- occasionally, part-time, and full-time. As employers weigh their options, the health and safety of the workforce should be top priority, as it impacts how to bring operations back online and employees back to some aspect of normal.

Reboarding is the process of helping organizations resume operations. But reboarding goes beyond just resuming operations, it minimizes health and safety risks as employees return to the workplace. It addresses employees resuming previous job responsibilities or training employees for new jobs in the organization. It also encompasses training new employees to replace those employees not returning to the workplace or supporting the expansion of operations.

The concept of reboarding applies when:

  • You are re-opening or re-staffing your physical locations after COVID-19 closures
  • Employees are returning to work after a layoff or returning after working at another company
  • Employees have transitioned to a new role within the company

A post-pandemic reboarding program will have unique considerations. Among them are:

Preparing the physical workplace – Employers should look at the internal risks of how COVID-19 could spread within their facility. This includes evaluation whether the business has adequate facilities for social distancing returning employees and adequate sanitation for handwashing. It may also require a business to rethink the design and layout of facilities.

Communication - Employers should frequently communicate with their employees. This includes general communications and new policies to be followed.

Training and upskilling - Many industries and regions within the country face a shortage of employees. It may be hard to attract employees in a tight labor market, and many in-demand jobs may be hard to fill. Consider promoting or re-skilling existing employees to take on leadership roles. This may require training on management and leadership skills. Promoting from within has many advantages, such as lower cost per position.

Employee mental health and trauma - Our current public health guidelines, such as social distancing, can make people feel isolated and lonely. Managers should also receive training on Mental Health First Aid and learn to actively listen to employees and encourage them to seek assistance when needed.

To help employers better understand the nuances involved in reboarding post-pandemic, Donna McEntee, Skillsoft Director of Workplace Safety and Health Solutions, will conduct a webinar, Return to Work: A Guide for Employee Reboarding, on Wednesday, July 21 at 12:00 p.m. EDT/ 9:00 a.m. PDT, where she introduces the concept of reboarding and shares important health and safety considerations for returning to the office environment.

During this webinar, attendees will learn:

  • Key considerations for preparing the workplace for return to work 
  • How reboarding differs from onboarding
  • Additional skills needed by managers for reboarding efforts
  • Management’s role in employee mental health and recognizing trauma and stress 

To learn practical approaches for the next phase of pandemic response, join this important webinar. Available free of charge, register to reserve‌ ‌your‌ ‌spot‌.