COVID-19 Resources

Navigating COVID-19 Containment Together

These are challenging times for businesses across the globe. The good news is companies are getting creative by taking an agile approach to meeting their strategic goals while caring for the people who help them get work done.

We’ve built an evolving repository of FAQs and insights – ranging from industry trends, mobility planning, and supply chain strategies, to business continuity as it relates to recruitment and talent market opportunities – all designed to help your company overcome this worldwide emergency.

If you’re a current customer who needs further guidance or a company seeking support, please reach out. We’re in this together, and we’re here to help you, your business, and your people thrive.

Page last updated on August 5 at 2:32 p.m. EDT

Return to the Workplace

As companies prepare their people and their facilities for the eventual return to the workplace, there’s much we can learn from essential businesses already tackling these issues, as well as parts of the world that have progressed further through the pandemic. There may not be a magical playbook for instituting a return to the workplace strategy, but this article series shares best practices ranging from getting physical spaces ready to maintain social distancing and sanitation practices, to preparing people and policies about temperature checks, working parents, any continuance of remote working, traveling, and everything in between.

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How Does PPE Fit into Return to the Workplace Planning Efforts?

Get some guidance on what level of protective equipment employers may need to provide to workers as part of their return to the workplace strategies.

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Bringing Workers Back: Who, When, & How

Plans to reenter the workplace should balance the need to mitigate economic impacts on employers and workers against the risks of coronavirus’ resurgence.

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Facility Cleaning: Maintaining a Safe and Healthy Workplace

Before welcoming workers back to your facility, consider how changes in how you clean and disinfect the space can limit the spread of COVID-19 and alleviate workers’ anxieties about returning.

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Physical Space Modifications: Adjust the Workplace to Make Work Safe

Consider how changes to your company’s physical space could enable social distancing, reduce health risks, and promote safe workplaces.

Labor Market Reports

Marketing Insights

US: National Job Growth Continues to Help Reverse COVID-19-Related Losses

Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) shows the addition of 7.3 million jobs since April, amounting to 34% of all job losses added back in just two months. Read our latest market insights report to see which industries are recovering the fastest, how AGS requisition data correlates to BLS data, plus commentary on factors that could slow or put economic and jobs recovery at risk.

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Global: Several EMEA & APAC Markets See Continued Labor Usage Declines

While a lot of research about pandemic’s labor market impacts focuses on the US, Canada, and the UK, this briefing highlights some notable trends elsewhere in the world, where data is either lagging or lacking. But by using AGS’ client data, we can see more real-time impacts across Denmark, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Ireland, Netherlands, Poland, Sweden, and Switzerland.

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UK: Jobs Will Recover, But the Time Needed for Demand to Normalize May Take Longer

Employment figures for April show a large fall compared to March, and May is likely to show even more. The Hospitality, Retail, and Construction industries could be driving much of this given the impact from the pandemic. Read more in our updated labor market report – the first in which newly released government data shows the beginning impacts of COVID-19.

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Canada: June Jobs Report Shows Summer Rebound with Continued Job Gains

As AGS continues to monitor the changing market landscape to help businesses make data-informed strategic decisions, we’re pleased to share this report, offering insights and analysis into how industries and regions across Canada continue to respond to the pandemic. This brief update features data from the June jobs report, which saw an increase of nearly 1 million jobs and equating to 40% of all job losses being recovered in May and June.

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Australia: Report Reveals Jobs Data and Insights to Consider for Future Workforce Planning

While Australia’s jobs market is certainly feeling the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, companies are finding ways to adapt to the changes. Additionally, the government announced a number of measures to support businesses, employees, and job seekers. Get our report to understand local market reactions to the pandemic segmented by industries and regions, plus what our analysts think the data reveals for the future of work.

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Singapore: The Time to Adopt New Recruitment Strategies is Now

While Singapore was a country with early control of the pandemic, confirmed cases are rising, which is impacting business continuity. Read our latest in a series of labor market reports to understand pre-pandemic conditions juxtaposed against the current job market, what the government is doing to help employers and workers, and what businesses should be thinking about as they consider adjustments to their workforce strategy.

AGS Insights and Delivery

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US – Federal Aid Delivers Opportunity for the Staffing Industry

To date, Congress has enacted three pieces of relief legislation to address the COVID-19 pandemic, driving four main areas of opportunity for the staffing industry.

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Three Talent Engagement Technologies for a Virtual, Changed World

Learn how companies are finding ways to take the sting out of isolation, especially when engaging with new talent.

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Strategic Supplier Insights into Working from Home

A recent survey finds all suppliers are highly motivated to keep workers engaged, and many are willing to provide them with laptops as a part of that effort

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Three Guides to Contingent Workforce Business Continuity

Navigate through the key scenarios and decisions your organization will face to ensure business continuity of your contingent workforce, with guides for North America, EMEA, and APAC

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Assessing Levels of Risk When Contractors Become Sick

Guidance on how to handle diagnosed COVID-19 cases with FAQs about sick pay and remote work

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Government Support – Singapore & Hong Kong

Wage support for employers is now available through two programs in Singapore and Hong Kong to help enterprises retain local employees.

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Furloughs/Job Retention Scheme – UK

Employers of furloughed contract workers can now seek up to 80% of monthly wage costs and other fees through the UK’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme to pay such workers. Learn about which workers are eligible, considerations for clients, any contract changes that may be required, and how self-employed workers may also benefit.

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Immigration & Travel Restrictions – APAC

Companies and contract workers face delays that could slow the contract worker’s start date during the onboarding process. Read the latest guidance, accompanied by online resources.

 

 

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Work From Home (WFH) Arrangements – APAC 

As more people are working remotely, it brings up several questions about how best to support this adjusted way of working and align with local government guidance.

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Immigration – US Only

As a result of the pandemic, employers face changing conditions that obligate them to handle H1-B employees certain ways when furloughs, layoffs, or hour reductions occur, while simultaneously contending with processing delays in documentation and onboarding that could slow a lawfully employed noncitizen’s start date, as well as actions that temporarily halt certain immigrant visa applications all together.

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Temperature Checks – US Only

As companies work to manage workforce and workplace safety, temperature checks of workers and facilities visitors, now permissible by the EEOC, can help. But this raises questions around who can do it and how. We have answers.

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Sick Workers & Related Pay Issues

Read answers to questions around when workers are symptomatic or test positive for COVID-19.

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The Stafford Act and Qualified Disaster Relief Payments – US Only

Since COVID-19 was declared a national emergency, employers can now take advantage of an Internal Revenue Code that allows them to make tax-free payments or reimbursements to help workers cope with the pandemic.

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Workplace and Workforce – Canada

New programs, resources, and insight can help businesses in Canada address COVID-19-related workplace and workforce challenges.

 

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Right to Work Verification and Wet Signatures – EMEA

With the help of technology, candidates can provide the relevant documents needed to clear pre-employment vetting to enable timely starts.

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Drug Testing – US Only

Gain insight on temporary drug testing screening waivers for companies to maintain business continuity with onboarding their contingent labor workforce in a timely way.

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Expense Reimbursements – US Only

Individuals new to remote work may incur costs that could be reimbursable. Here, we discuss typical office and childcare expenses.

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Essential Workers Documentation – US Only

Get answers to what essential workers may need in order to document their need to be physically present on a work site.

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Layoffs & Furloughs – US Only

Many companies are re-evaluating their financial positions and their current and short-term needs for contingent labor. These FAQs address some of their options to move forward.

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Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9)

Learn which employers can review documents for Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) remotely and check back for insight on drug testing screening.

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Remote Work

As more people begin to work remotely, it brings up several questions around how to best enable this shift.

 

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Workplace Preparedness

When the unexpected happens, companies need to have a plan in place, so they’re ready to respond to emerging needs. 

Government Updates

Europe – European Union Revamps Europass to Get People Working

The European Union has revamped an initiative to help job hunters across Europe to counteract the rise in unemployment due to the coronavirus pandemic (July 16, 2020).

India – Lockdowns Reimposed as Virus Cases Grow

Two-week lockdowns are being reinstated across parts of India, including technology hub Bangalore, in an effort to stave off further virus spread (July 15, 2020).

Malaysia – ASEAN COVID-19 Updates from Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, and the Philippines

Malaysia continues to ease restrictions, such as removing limits on gatherings or meetings as of July 15 (July 14, 2020).

Hong Kong – Learnings From the Past Inform Future Containment Strategies

Signs of a third wave lead public health experts to encourage the Hong Kong government to overhaul its quarantine exemption policy and prepare more isolation facilities within the community (July 14, 2020).

Singapore – Support Packages Designed to Boost Slow Economic Recovery

While Singapore’s economic recovery in the months ahead will be a slow and uneven journey, the Government has announced four support packages worth nearly 20 percent of GDP (July 14, 2020).

Australia – Human Trials Begin on Coronavirus Vaccine

In a positive sign of hope, 120 volunteers in Brisbane have received their first dose of a potential immunization, developed by the University of Queensland (July 13, 2020).

US – OSHA Updates FAQs on Face Masks in the Workplace

New guidelines include a general recommendation for employers to encourage workers to wear face coverings while in the workplace – unless doing so would not be appropriate or create a hazard (July 13, 2020).

India – Government Cuts Interest on Delayed Filing of GST Returns by 50%

The government announced it is easing compliance rules around Goods and Services Tax (GST) payments, including deferring tax increases and reducing interest on late filings for small businesses (June 12, 2020).

Europe – State Aid European Commission Amends Temporary Framework to Include Aid for Micro- and Small Companies

To support Member States’ economies during the COVID-19 outbreak, the European Commission has amended the temporary framework for state aid for a third time (July 8, 2020).

UK – Chancellor Unveils Three-Point Plan for Jobs

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced a three-point plan to support jobs: create jobs, support people to find jobs, and protect jobs (July 8, 2020).

Business News We’re Watching

Singapore – Cross-Border Travel With Malaysia to Begin on August 10

Singapore and Malaysia plan to allow some business travelers and residents to begin cross-border travel between the two countries for essential or official purposes (July 14, 2020).

India – Professionals Who Can Work From Home are Enjoying Flexibility

In a sign of reverse migration, HR consultants say more professional workers are seeking, and getting, permission from employers to return to their hometowns to work from home (July 13, 2020).

US – Google Will Fund 100,000 Career Certification Scholarships to Help Workers Find Jobs

The tech giant has announced certificates in the fields of data analytics, project management, and user experience design to help people boost their skills then find jobs (July 13, 2020).

UK – June Jobs Data Shows First Signs of Positivity in Professional Hiring

According to the Association of Professional Staffing Companies, permanent (38%) and contract (31%) job opportunities were up month on month in June (July 13, 2020).

Canada – Country Adds Jobs in June, Second Month of Increase Amid Pandemic

Employment data released by Statistics Canada shows an increase of 952,900 jobs in June compared to May, with more than half coming from full-time positions (July 10, 2020).

UK – Job Finding Service Helps Those Out of Work for Under Three Months

A new online, job finding support service is the result of a collaboration between the Recruitment and Employment Confederation, its members, and the Department of Work and Pensions (July 10, 2020).

US – Automakers Laud US Consumer ‘Resilience’ Despite COVID-19 Hit to Sales

Major automakers posted reduced sales but said consumer demands remains strong throughout the pandemic (July 1, 2020).

US – CVS Now Offers Employers, Universities a COVID-19 Testing Program

The Return Ready program is one offering that could help organizations return to work and school safely through a customizable testing solution (June 24, 2020).

India – Survey Finds Professionals Slightly Upbeat About Income

A LinkedIn survey of 1,351 professionals in India find 50% of workers in corporate services, 46% in manufacturing, and 41% in education think their firms will be better off six months from now. (June 30, 2020).

India – Startups to Diversify Their Businesses to Offset Pandemic-Induced Losses

Startups across India are getting creative and are exploring ways to become more capital-efficient in the short- and long-term (June 29, 2020).

Resources

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Contact Us

If you have an urgent issue that needs a response, contact your program leader or reach us at one of the addresses below. When emailing, please be sure to include the client name, where applicable.

North America

MSP Response Team

RPO Response Team

EMEA

MSP & RPO Response Team

APAC

MSP Response Team

India

MSP Response Team

General Inquiries

If your business is struggling to navigate how the COVID-19 pandemic is impacting contingent and permanent staffing, please reach out. We are committed to sharing what we know and guiding you as you evaluate your options.

This site contains general information only, and AGS is not rendering legal advice. Before making any decision or taking any action that may affect your business, you should consult qualified legal counsel. AGS shall not be responsible for any loss whatsoever sustained by any person or company who relies on this update. Inclusion of any hyperlink or explanatory notes/summary do not imply any endorsement, investigation, verification, or monitoring by AGS of any information in any hyperlinked site.