Platform launches to support companies and workers through coronavirus

Apr 3, 2020 10:40 PM ET

The Rehire Project, a new digital initiative to help as many companies as possible support workers being laid off or furloughed during the coronavirus crisis, and allow them to re-hire rapidly when circumstances improve.

The online tool is free for smaller businesses, charities and the public sector, with larger organisations paying a nominal fee to help support the service for all users. Any profits made during the current crisis will be donated to the NHS Charities COVID-19 Urgent Appeal and the World Health Organisation.

With layoffs moving at such speed across so many industries, companies are struggling to maintain contact with workers they have to lay off or furlough. This leads to workers being cut adrift, with no contact or idea of what is going on with their former employers, as well as making the rehiring process slow, messy and costly when work picks up.

The Rehire Project was created by Talon, a workforce management software company. Over the past two weeks, Talon has diverted resources from commercial projects, and worked round the clock to create something rapidly to support companies and workers through this crisis.

Talon CEO, Jonny Dunning said, “Like everyone else, we were shocked by the devastation from COVID-19 and wanted to play our part in fighting back. The inspiration for The Rehire Project came when a close friend was forced to lay off fifty workers, and was heartbroken – particularly as he knew he’d struggle to get his great workers back after the crisis.

“We wanted to help prevent that happening and support workers in getting their jobs back with as many organisations as we could. This is obviously an intensely worrying time for people in regards to the very real health risk, but the personal and economic threat this crisis poses to companies and workers alike is something that is also affecting almost everyone in some way at the moment.”

The Rehire Project lets organisations support the workers they’ve had to furlough or lay off during the coronavirus crisis by communicating with them via the platform, offering advice and status updates to keep workers informed on company progress and rehiring prospects. It also delivers automated check-ins so the company is able to monitor availability and commence rehiring instantly when business picks up, without the need for an expensive and time consuming recruitment process.

Ben Willmott, CIPD Head of Public Policy said, “Continuing to communicate and connect with staff, including contractors, who have been temporarily laid off or furloughed is extremely important to reiterate that the organisation has not forgotten them. It is also vital they can receive important information and updates when necessary. This will also make it easier to bring people back into their jobs when this is possible.”

Dunning added, “What we know best is workforce software, so we built a system that would help workers and employers stay connected through the crisis, and get back to work as fast as possible once it eases. We wanted it to be freely available to as many organisations as possible, particularly the smaller ones with the least resources to manage during the Covid emergency. We also wanted to be able to support the great work the NHS and WHO are doing.

“My plea to companies is this, if you’ve had to let someone go, furlough them or put their role on pause, stay in touch! It doesn’t matter whether they are an employee, freelancer, contractor, temp or even a volunteer, keep them up to date, do your best to look after them and hopefully you’ll be able to hire them back when things return to normal,” added Dunning.

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