Winter is Coming: Do You Have a Plan for Severe Weather?

What do many employees dread most about severe weather? Driving in it.

Getting across town during severe weather can be stressful, time-consuming, and dangerous. What can you as an employer do to keep your employees safe and your organization functioning when severe weather hits?

The first step is to have guidelines in place and communicated to your employees.

If you already have guidelines in place, check that all the information is current. Verify that the implemented processes worked as intended in the past. If not, what might need to be updated or communicated to avoid confusion the next time severe weather rolls in?

If you have not already implemented a severe weather plan, what are some of the things you might want to consider?

  • How are employees to determine whether the employer is open or closed for business?
  • Who has the authorization to determine a delayed opening, early closing, or full-day closure?
  • How is pay affected when the employer closes?
  • Do employees need to use personal time or vacation when absent because of weather conditions?
  • Who is able to work from home?
  • Is make-up time expected for tardiness or absenteeism?
  • Who should the employees call if they are concerned about safely making it to work?
  • How do potential closures affect an employer with multiple locations?

The above are just some of the issues an employer might need to consider when crafting or revamping a severe weather policy/guideline. Other topics for consideration include area, industry, and company-specific details.

Severe weather can come in many forms and at different times of the year for Colorado, Arizona, Utah, and the surrounding areas. It is a good idea to reiterate processes and procedures for employees any time there is the possibility of severe weather. Don’t assume that employees know what to do.