Though the USA is nowhere near the end of this pandemic, companies are beginning to wonder when they might be able to bring employees back into the office as stay-at-home orders start to expire and the states ramp up testing efforts. With careful planning, many companies can start to bring workers back while also mitigating risk and preventing further transmission. Wellmark Blue Cross Blue Shield recently started a pilot program to bring people back into the office. Currently, 208 employees are coming at least once a week.
- A pilot program: Wellmark Blue Cross Blue Shield launched a pilot program in June to bring employees back to the office in the wake of the pandemic. “We would have up to 10 percent of our workforce return if they wanted to volunteer a minimum of one day a week in the office, as long as they were fully vaccinated,” Wellmark Executive Vice President Marci Chickering told We Are Iowa.
- Back to pavilion: After more than a year of working from home, some companies are inviting employees back to the building _ while others are paying their employees to have remote workspaces. Since March of 2020, Wellmark Blue Cross Blue Shield executive vice president Marci Chickering said the company has been thinking of ways to bring its employees back to its downtown office.
- New program: The executive vice president said the pilot program consists of just over 200 out of their roughly 1,800 employees. The program will run through Labor Day and then be evaluated to see if it’s working well enough to be used to bring back the rest of Wellmark’s workers.
- Involvement: So far, Chickering said the employees involved in the pilot program like it. “Just being back part of the vibe, being back in the organization, those were some good examples of what employees have shared with us,” Chickering said.
- Healthier America: For the past several years, The Wellmark Foundation has focused on these key social determinants of health. According to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Commission to Build a Healthier America, “people can make healthier choices if they live in neighborhoods that are safe, free from violence, and designed to promote health. Ensuring opportunities for residents to make healthy choices should be a key component of all community and neighborhood development initiatives.”