Protecting key staff during the COVID-19 pandemic: 5 top tips

Protecting key staff during the COVID-19 pandemic: 5 top tips

Protecting key staff who are both crucial and influential is of paramount importance to any business. Key persons normally possess special skills, intellect, knowledge, experience and/or have valuable contacts, or they could be a person whose loss or replacement attracts significant financial expense. Examples might include an IT manager, an Account Director, or indeed COO and CEO’s.

Whether it’s a major corporation, SME, or micro business, senior staff play a key role in the operation of a company. If the position of a key staff member is at risk, the whole business may also be at risk.

Due to COVID-19, the risk key staff face has increased - and so has the need to protect them. But business owners may be wondering how best to navigate this uncertain terrain, in order to protect key staff whilst ensuring their business operatives effectively.

To steer you down the right track, we have compiled our five top tips for protecting key staff during the current pandemic. Read them below:

1. Minimise on-site visits and travel

Key staff should avoid all but the most crucial on-site visits, to ensure they are at reduced exposure to the risk of infection. 

Key staff should also avoid all but the most essential business travel, especially when using public transport, to help keep risk at a minimum.

2. Use remote communications

All senior staff should communicate with each other, as well as other team members, via the use of remote communications - such as phone calls or video calls.

Make all employees aware of this practice via friendly reminders, which include the contact details of senior staff for reference.

3. Provide visibility for employees

Ensure planning is in place to provide sufficient visibility of key staff members for other employees, particularly those who require increased guidance. This can be achieved by regular ‘all hands’ meetings, conducted via online communications.

4. Plan for the long term

Protecting key staff will remain vital throughout this uncertain period. As such, key staff should avoid being back in the office, or on-site, as restrictions ease.

Instead, look to protect key staff by having them return to work only when it is certain they will be safe to do so.

5. Keyman insurance can also help protect the businesses balance sheet should the worst happen

As the name implies, 'keyman' or 'key person' insurance provides cover against the serious illness or death of a person vital to the running of a business. If that person falls ill or dies, then the insurance settlement will be paid directly to the company. 

These funds can then be used to mitigate any ensuing financial difficulties or pay for recruiting a replacement for the absent or deceased employee. 

A key person hospitalised by critical illness, too, may recover and return to work. In these circumstances, the insurance payout could fund their temporary replacement or make up for any loss of revenue the business bears as a result of their absence.

For more information on keyman insurance, contact our employee benefits specialist, Nick Skipper.

For more tips and tricks on keeping your business running smoothly while in lockdown, such as keeping staff cyber safe, visit our LinkedIn and Twitter pages.