When are you most productive? When you’re down in the dumps dreading that Monday morning alarm clock, or when you sincerely look forward to a day at work?

The answer is pretty simple.  Happy employees are productive employees. So what can you do as a leader to positively impact office morale and ultimately reap the results when it comes to overall team effectiveness?

Four-Step Plan for Success
When it comes to morale building, the key is to make your employees feel valued. The following tactics go a long way toward achieving this ongoing goal:

  1. Good morale – like good leadership – starts at the top.
    Your attitude and daily demeanor will rub off on your employees, so keep it positive. Treat your staff members with respect, give them compliments, practice basic courtesy, and take a sincere interest in projects they’re working on.  If it’s necessary and appropriate, don’t hesitate to roll up your sleeves and help. Be supportive, even in situations where you have to step in and manage conflict on behalf of your employees.
  2. Walk a mile in your employees’ shoes.
    In other words, be considerate of each staff member and his or her individual lives, needs and concerns.  That single parent may need more flexible scheduling or the chance to do some work at home now and then. And back at the office, a meeting or work session held outdoors or off site may boost everyone’s enthusiasm. Be aware of and inquire about employees’ families, hobbies, interests and plans for their weekend or upcoming vacation.
  3. Celebrate milestones and successes.
    Never underestimate the power of employee recognition. Incentive and rewards systems – whether it’s something as formal as an Associate of the Month program or as simple as a birthday cake during a staff meeting – have proven return on investment.  Recent studies by organizations including Gallup and the Corporate Leadership Council have shown that recognition is highly correlated with enhanced employee engagement which, in turn, boosts job performance and overall business value.
  4. Perk things up.
    Employee perks – those discretionary, optional benefits that make life just a little easier, sweeter or more fun – can go a long way towards boosting morale. Company logoed apparel, movie passes, or a few hours off to make it to the school play will tend to pay for themselves many times over in terms of enhanced performance and productivity. As you select these perks, consider the unique characteristics, interests and preferences of each individual employee. Don’t give the logoed golf tees to someone, only to find out she spends her free time at the bowling alley. With just a little thought and consideration, you can ensure that your perks are right on target.
For more information on boosting office productivity, Contact us Today. As staffing and recruitment experts, we’re always happy to discuss your needs.


Automation. Robotics. Software. There are many opportunities to use the latest warehouse technology to create efficiencies and improve productivity so your company can get more done for less.

In an effort to increase profits, it’s important to know more about technological trends in the warehouse. This way, you can be selective about which pieces of technology you pursue.

You’ll also be better equipped to optimize your workforce in the warehouse by taking routine tasks away from your people and providing them with the opportunity to execute more valuable tasks. Finding the right combination of technology and human optimization will help you create a more robust and efficient work environment!

To get started, let’s review some warehouse technology trends that you should know about.


As you probably already know, automation is a big initiative for many warehouses. Companies are looking for new and improved ways to automatically track inventory movement throughout the warehouse, predict when inventory needs to be re-stocked, and anticipate problems before they happen. Consider some ways to deploy automation technology in the warehouse:

  • Robots can replace labor-intensive or repetitive tasks.
  • Automation software can replace data-entry tasks and spreadsheets.
  • Predictive analytics can be used to anticipate problem areas in the warehouse.


Robots are becoming commonplace in the warehouse to execute basic tasks that free up workers to perform more important tasks. And, they can execute tasks more than just picking up boxes and moving them down the assembly line. As robotics technology continues to improve, there are more ways to deploy robots in the warehouse.

  • Automated guided vehicles (AGVs) can be used to replace forklifts that are typically driven by workers.
  • Articulated robotic arms can perform more complex tasks beyond just picking and moving. They can now receive and even palletize items.
  • Collaborative robots bridge the gap between humans and technology by helping workers do their job more efficiently. For example, these robots can intelligently follow around workers to receive and hold picked items.


Many companies already use a WMS to manage the warehouse, and WMS has replaced spreadsheets and disconnected legacy pieces of software to improve the functionality of the warehouse. Now, many WMS vendors are taking their software platforms to the next level by introducing advanced capabilities. Would these technological enhancements help your warehouse?

  • Real-time inventory tracking helps workers identify which items need their attention and where they are located.
  • Use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to predict demand and initiate the process of fulfilling an expected order or addressing a shortage.
  • Support integrations with other pieces of technology in your warehouse or other business platforms (e.g., your ERP) to create reports for other stakeholders.


Sensors can be used to support everyday activity in the warehouse that involves inventory, people, and technology. There are many different ways to utilize sensors to help your team make informed decisions about how to manage the different components that make up a safe, efficient, and productive warehouse.

  • Inventory control sensors can monitor when items enter and leave the warehouse. They can feed data into software to support real-time monitoring.
  • Safety sensors can detect problem areas (such as too many workers gathered in one area) or when automated vehicles pose a risk to employees on the floor (e.g., AGVs moving near blind corners).
  • Thermal heat sensors can track when certain employees are overheated and need to take a break.
  • Technology sensors can detect when certain pieces of technology used in the warehouse are due for maintenance or temporarily need to be placed out of service.


There is a stigma around using technology to track or survey employee activity in the warehouse. However, if done correctly, your company can use tracking technology to support your employees, not make them feel like they are schoolchildren who need to be monitored to ensure they are doing their job and not slacking off. Consider some technological trends around employee tracking in the warehouse.

  • Logistical mapping that works with AI and other automation technology can be used to identify which employees are in the best geographical position in the warehouse to address a problem.
  • Automated alerts can help workers know where they are most needed in the warehouse at any given moment so that they can readily solve the problem.
  • Productivity monitoring can be used to detect when employees are near their set limit for how much they can produce in a given shift before their productivity drops.


When it comes to protecting our environment, little things really do mean a lot. In 2021, minor changes in energy usage by Americans saved $19 billion and reduced greenhouse gas emissions in an amount equivalent to that generated by 29 million automobiles.

Just think of the potential if you can get your office to “go green!”

An eco-friendly office environment not only helps to save our planet, but it also helps your company save money. And, it can help boost morale as team members collaborate to support the greater good. Here are some tips to help you get started:

Save a Tree  

Have you heard of the 3Rs: reduce, re-use and recycle? They apply to most aspects of environmental conservation, but perhaps nowhere are they more relevant than when it comes to a simple product used countless times throughout the day: paper. Reduce paper usage by:

  • Avoiding it all together. Fax documents directly from your computer. Share subscriptions to periodicals and journals. Edit documents on your screen instead of printing and hand editing them.
  • Decreasing the amount you do use. Print and copy double sided. Email documents as attachments. When generating draft copies, use the reverse side of paper that has already been used and relegated to the recycling bin. (Did you know that producing a single sheet of virgin paper uses 20 watt-hours of energy?)
  • Recycling shredded paper. See if your shipping department can use it instead of purchasing additional packaging material. Or, let employees take it home to use, for their personal shipping needs or as bedding for small pets.
  • Having printed materials produced on recycled paper stock. This could include letterhead, business cards, envelopes, and promotional items.

Run Equipment Efficiently

Use these tips to save energy, time and space, as well as reduce noise:

  • Switch to a laptop. Laptops use only 10 percent of the energy required by desktop computers. And, they take up less room and are virtually noiseless.
  • Use dot matrix, impact or inkjet printers. Dot matrix and impact printers use 80 to 90 percent less energy while providing good speed and adequate quality. Black-and-white inkjet printing uses 95 percent less energy. Similar savings can be achieved by using inkjet fax machines.
  • Reduce the size of your computer monitor. A 14-inch color monitor uses up to 50 percent more energy than a 10-inch monitor.

Make it a Team Effort

You can be a 3R champion by taking the lead in your office’s eco-friendly strategy. Getting the entire team involved makes everyone feel good, for the simple reason that being eco-friendly is the right thing to do – and it’s contagious! Initiatives might include:

  • Setting up a recycling center. Place labeled bins in a common area and arrange to have items picked up or delivered to a waste management center. If the center pays for materials, use the funds to buy lunch for your team or support a charitable cause.
  • Carpooling. Save gas, save money, and maybe make some friends in the process.

With a minimum investment of time, effort and creativity, it’s easy to “go green.” Before you know it, it becomes second nature. And your workplace and your planet will thank you for it!

For more tips on building a better workplace, contact the expert team at Alternative Staffing today.


If you’ve been selected to interview for a job, it typically means you’re a serious contender for the position. At this stage of your search process, follow-up is extremely critical. In fact, it can significantly affect whether or not you progress to the next stage in the hiring process or ultimately, receive an offer.

Increasingly, email follow-up messages are better received by hiring managers – versus hand-written notes – because they are easily saved and shared, and response is efficient and easy. Post-interview emails should be sent within 24 hours to everyone with whom you interviewed or interacted with during the session.

Why Your Follow up Message is Important
Prompt follow up via a well-crafted and timely email is not only a way of expressing your gratitude for an interview opportunity, but it also reinforces your qualifications and continued interest in the position.

Other reasons why you need to take this important step include:

  • By following up, you have another opportunity to demonstrate positive qualities typically sought by potential employers, including tenacity, dedication, attention to detail and the ability to follow through.
  • Some employers use follow up (or lack thereof) as a screening tool in the hiring process. If there are a number of similarly qualified candidates on the short list for filling a position, effective follow up can be a strategic means of tipping the scales in your favor.
  • Following up after an interview gives you a confidence boost and additional inspiration to move forward in pursuing your desired job.

Tips for Getting it Right
Keep these tips in mind as you write and send your follow-up email:

  • Get the right contact information. Find the correct names and addresses of the people to whom you are sending your message. Be sure spelling and grammar are flawless and that there are no typos or other errors.
  • In your email, thank the interviewer for taking the time to meet with you.
  • Highlight your relevant skills and experience. Briefly summarize why the position is an excellent match based on your assets and interest.
  • Promote your candidacy. Remind the employer what a positive role you would play and valuable contribution you would make to the company.
  • Maintain a positive attitude. Even if you are not selected, your follow-up can mean the employer will keep you in mind for future openings.


Job searching is a multifaceted process. It’s extremely important that you orchestrate each step to your benefit. A career coach or recruiting specialist can be a valuable partner as you find and secure the job of your dreams. To learn more, Contact Alternative Staffing Today.


Your cover letter is often the earliest contact you have with a potential employer, so never underestimate its importance as you make that critical first impression.

Studies have shown that reviewers spend an average of only about 10 seconds scanning candidates’ cover letters. So, you need to make your mark quickly and effectively or you run the risk of your letter – and accompanying resume – landing in the recycling bin.

How can you ensure that your cover letter will rise to the top and land in a decision maker’s inbox instead? These tips can help:

Customize and Personalize.
Make sure your cover letter is tailored to the job description and reflects your personality and interest in the position, as well as the added value you bring to the table.

  • Address it to a real person. Stay away from “Dear Sir or Madam” or “To Whom it May Concern” and if possible, address your cover letter to a staffing or HR decision maker within the company. Conduct research via the company’s web site, LinkedIn page, or other sources to find this information.
  • If you have a contact within the company, mention them. If you’ve been referred for the job by, or know someone who is a reliable employee at the company, use this to your advantage by referencing them and telling how they inspired your interest.
  • Zero in on how you can help the company. Demonstrate your knowledge of current issues facing the organization and/or its industry, and point to how your skill set and experience could help them improve and add value.

Quality Versus Quantity.
Nearly half of employers in a recent survey reported that a cover letter of about a half page in length is ideal. Other research cites three to five short paragraphs as the optimal length. So, choose your words carefully and keep your cover letter concise and to the point.

  • Make it easy to read. Remember the 10-second parameter. Bullet points are helpful in listing examples, details and data.
  • Include keywords. An increasing number of companies use computerized systems to track cover letters and resumes. When you include the right keywords, your documents have a better chance of being selected.
  • Settle for nothing less than perfect when it comes to spelling and grammar. Errors convey the perception that you’re careless, lack an eye for detail, and will continue to make mistakes if hired.

Show Your Value.
Your cover letter should present a compelling case for why you are not just a great candidate, but the candidate who will add the most value to the job.

  • Put yourself in the employer’s shoes. When you identify your pertinent skills and experience, keep in mind that this is determined by the hiring manager’s best interests.
  • Quantify your experience with data. For instance, if you’re interested in a manufacturing management position, consider a statement such as, “As plant manager at XYZ Company since 2009, I have reduced accidents by 33 percent, increased productivity by 17 percent and grown quality by 11 percent.” Be as specific as possible.

For additional tips on how to make your cover letter and related materials – and you – shine during your career search, contact the experts at Alternative Staffing.


The role of warehouse managers has drastically changed over time. A warehouse manager is no longer just expected to ensure that goods are stored in the right place, products easily retrieved, and each requested item is moved from one location to another.

These tasks are still important, but thanks to advances in technology and increased demand in the supply chain, the role of a warehouse manager is more strategic than functional. That’s why your company needs access to warehouse managers that can adapt to support supply chain management.

If you are wondering how managers today are different from managers in the past, let’s further examine the changing role of warehouse managers so that you can find the right talent to fill critical roles in your company.


Technology has enabled individuals in managerial roles to take on greater responsibility and ownership of activity in the warehouse. There are many more tools at your disposal than in the past to help warehouse managers embrace this challenge.

Plus, as the business community continues to recover from supply chain disruptions caused by the global pandemic, warehouse managers play a critical role in using data to identify issues, respond accordingly, and keep the supply chain moving.

Consider three of the most important hallmarks of successful warehouse managers that you should look for to support your warehouse.

1. Strategic Use of Technology

Many warehouse managers are accustomed to using some type of warehouse management system (WMS) to track the status of products, monitor inventory levels, and generate reports. However, many other pieces of technology need to be deployed to support efficiency and productivity.

Specifically, the use of automation continues to drive today’s warehouses. Perhaps your company is already using smart technology such as automated picking tools, guided vehicles, and automated inventory control platforms.

The key for warehouse managers is knowing how use this technology strategically. Not every piece of technology is the right fit for your warehouse, an that’s why managers need to be able to discern which tools are helpful versus those that don’t add value.

You may need a different type of manager today from managers in the past to understand how to best use available technology to support the supply chain.

2. Use of Data Analysis + Predictive Analytics

Another major advancement in the warehouse is the use of data analysis and predictive analytics. According to recent surveys, these pieces of technology are two of the most important elements to support the modern supply chain:

  • Data analysis (41% priority in supply chain management)
  • IoT (39% priority)
  • Cloud computing (39% priority)
  • Info security (31% priority)
  • Predictive analytics (29% priority)

Data analysis and predictive analytics can be utilized in the warehouse to anticipate when inventory levels will drop below thresholds, feed data into the system to automate re-ordering certain products, track unusual changes that prompt action, and help generate reports to support decision-making.

Today’s warehouse managers don’t need to be data scientists. Still, they need to understand how to analyze the data presented to them, use it to make predictions, and then strategically take action to support the warehouse’s role in the supply chain.

3. Motivate Warehouse Workers

In addition to using advanced technology, warehouse managers need to be able to motivate warehouse workers differently to achieve higher levels of productivity.

Automation has replaced many basic tasks in the warehouse. Now, warehouse workers are taking on greater responsibility beyond moving boxes or scanning labels. As a result, the role of a warehouse manager has changed from just monitoring whether products are in the right place to engaging warehouse workers to help them use available tools to support the supply chain.

As you can see, managers not only need to understand how to use technology, they also need to be able to instruct warehouse workers on the value of using technology – being able to convey the “why” behind certain actions is a critical skill that not every warehouse manager possesses.

When it comes to effective motivation, there is a significant difference between what’s required of today’s warehouse managers compared to the past.


We proudly work with companies that utilize warehouse space to support their supply chain. We can help you identify the right talent to strategically manage your warehouse.

Through our support as a leading warehouse staffing agency, you’ll be able to reduce turnover, increase productivity, and grow revenue by filling key positions with the right talent.

Talk to us today about identifying a staffing solution for your warehouse. We’ll analyze your current state, look for opportunities to fill roles, and draw from our excellent talent pool to provide you with highly-qualified talent. Let us elevate your operating reality.


Editor’s Note: This story first appeared in the Nov. 15 print edition of the GSA Business Report. Since publication, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans put a block on OSHA vaccine or testing requirements for employers over 100 people (.pdf). The Biden Administration filed a request for the federal appeals court for the Sixth Circuit in Cincinnati for an emergency ruling to lift the block Tuesday (.pdf).

Even before President Joe Biden issued his widespread workplace vaccine mandate on Nov. 4, several large employers operating in the Upstate felt a backlash against the existing vaccine policy for federal contractors.

After General Electric sent out an email noting a vaccine requirement for all federal contractors on Oct. 15, employees at Greenville’s plant staged a walkout Oct. 21 and attracted national attention through publications like The Hill and Fox News.

“We stood by the GE employees during the #walkout yesterday!” the Greenville County GOP said in a statement following the protest. “We believe that medical mandates are an infringement on American liberties and we will continue standing up against them.”

Reportedly, dozens of protestors had clocked out of work to participate but, according to a GE spokesperson, they did not resign before the protest. The spokesperson did not comment on how many employees resigned following the Oct. 21.

Weekly COVID-19 testing will not be an alternative for employees without a health or religious exemption under the federal mandate, according to the company. On Nov. 5, the spokesperson said it was too early to comment on the impact of the mandate on GE’s operations.

On Oct. 11, Lockheed Martin Corp. required all federal contractors and subcontractors with a covered contract to get a COVID-19 vaccination by Dec. 8, unless approved for an exemption.

“As a means of fully complying, we are taking necessary steps to ensure a smooth implementation, including providing a system for employees to upload their proof of vaccination, get vaccinated and access a standard accommodations process for individuals unable to get vaccinated because their health status or sincerely held religious belief prevents it,” the company said in the Oct. 11 statement.

Following the mandate, fewer than 20 employees at Lockheed’s Greenville plant staged a protest, according to a Lockheed spokesperson, but participants did not walk out on the job.

With the new Nov. 4 mandate, the vaccination deadline for federal contractors has been pushed back to Jan. 4 in line with the mandatory vaccination deadlines for companies with 100 or more employees or for health care facilities participating in Medicare or Medicaid.

Companies of more than 100 employees, roughly 84 million employers across the country, according to a statement from the White House, must require their employees to either be fully vaccinated by the January deadline or to receive weekly COVID-19 testing and wear masks in the workplace.

“Vaccination requirements have increased vaccination rates by more than 20 percentage points — to over 90% — across a wide range of businesses and organizations,” the White House said in the statement. “According to Wall Street analysts, vaccination requirements could result in as many as 5 million American workers going back to work.”

In retaliation, Gov. Henry McMaster issued an executive order on Nov. 4 prohibiting all 19 state agencies in his cabinet from requiring employees to receive the vaccine. The order dovetails McMaster and S.C. Attorney General Alan Wilson’s legal challenge to the Biden administration’s vaccine mandates for federal contractors and employers with more than 100 employees, according to a statement from the governor’s office.

“On the new OSHA regulation that has been published today, we will fight that aggressively,” McMaster said at a press conference Nov. 4. “We will, we have been and we will continue to fight these unlawful regulations and acts and intrusions on the rights of our people with all the strength that we have.”

By Molly Hulsey  /




Assemblers are an indispensable part of the manufacturing industry and a component of almost any field. The job titles may vary slightly depending on the organization and industry, so you will frequently see titles like: mechanical assemblers, production assembles, and industrial assemblers.


Most employers consider both hard and soft skills in these roles. For hard skills, they look for people with manual dexterity. Fine motor skills and steady hand-eye coordination are essential because this work is often a manual process and requires the use of a variety of tools. Additionally, basic math skills, keen attention to detail, and the ability to read and understand blueprints are crucial elements to the job. For soft skills, teamwork is the top of the list. Production roles are dependent on an entire team working well together. Focus and self-motivation are significant as well because these jobs are in fast-paced environments. If you are efficient and timely in your role, you offer positive contributions to the overall production.


As a whole, most of these positions require a high school diploma/GED and some work experience. Many positions provide on-the-job training, while the more advanced assembly roles may require an associate degree from a technical school.


In simplest terms, you build and assemble products and the parts connected to that product (often manufactured goods). You could construct and fasten parts for aircraft structures, wind wire coils for electrical components, laminate fiberglass molds for automobiles, and much more. Not only will you need to read and execute on blueprints, but you may be required to troubleshoot equipment to ensure everything is working accurately.


You will most likely work with various hand and manufacturing tools, like impact wrenches, torque spindles, etc. Additionally, production assemblers should be familiar and comfortable with calibration equipment and forklifts and be able to lift 50 lbs. or more at any given time.


Production assembly roles often have slots for all shifts (first, second, and third) that will be dependent on the products and location of the company.


The most common work environment for production assemblers is in manufacturing plants. Most factories have a clean working space and ventilation systems that ensure the safety of the workers. Depending on the product, protective gear may be a requirement for daily use inside the factory.


When Hiring Manufacturing Positions: Consider These 3 Things


Manufacturing jobs have become more appealing to the general public over the years. It’s a great industry to enter into for many because there are so many learning and financial growth opportunities. In some ways, this is great for employers because there are always people interested when you have a position to fill. However, not all of those people might be the right fit for the job.

To help you better navigate changes in the job market trends for manufacturing positions, consider the following.


Filling a position with a weak candidate will only result in more work for you. That’s why it’s important that you’re really thoughtful and strategic about the way you go about your hiring process. Some tips to help you develop or strengthen your strategy are:

  • Determine skills and abilities that are a must for the position, and then another list of things that are a plus. This should stand out and be the most important thing in your job ad. Compare these lists with your applicant’s resumes and make sure they align before setting up an interview.
  • Be flexible about candidates. These days, manufacturing jobs require a lot of different skills and versatility. What’s really important is that the individual possesses those specific things. Don’t focus so heavily on schooling or industry experience. While those things are a plus, you may find an individual with a different background who is even more qualified for the job based on their skillset.
  • Clean up your internet presence. As much as your opinion of potential employees matters, their perception of you does as well. You want your ideal candidate to want you as much as you want them, and the way they’re going to learn about you is through the internet. Get started by making sure your website is easy to navigate and setting up some social media accounts. Those will need to be maintained, so having a person who is responsible for those items is a good idea.
  • Invest in training & retention. The initial experience you provide new employees with has a huge effect on their success with the company. Without proper training, the employee can feel frustrated and stressed, causing their performance to suffer and unfair expectations to be set. Investing in a thorough training process benefits you just as much as it does the employee because you will be rewarded with confident people who know what they’re doing and want to stick around.


As the manufacturing climate continues to evolve, it helps to pin down the specific qualities and work ethic that will always be useful in the workplace. This will allow you to have a solid strategy that you don’t have to keep changing. It also ensures you are only spending time on interviews with real potential. As experts in staffing manufacturing positions, we have found that successful employees possess the following:

  • Creative problem-solving abilities. A strong employee will be able to make smart decisions quickly when under pressure and know how to navigate solving unforeseen issues. Candidates with any management experience often possess good problem-solving skills.
  • Extra attention to detail. Lack of attention to detail can easily result in product quality to suffer and the possibility of injury in the manufacturing industry. This makes it essential that every hire is detail-oriented and meticulous.
  • Flexibility. New hires need to be able to cross-train and adjust to change with a commitment to constructive criticism and constant improvement. The more capabilities a person acquires, the more useful they are.
  • Strong technical skills. The manufacturing industry is constantly adding in new tools and technology so things will run smoothly. Employees with technical skills allow your company the ability to continue to thrive and adapt in this digitally-driven age.


In addition to knowing what to look for, it’s also important that you know how best to position your job opening to attract the right crowd. Some examples are:

  • Make the job description clear, simple, and appealing.
  • Require that all job inquiries include a cover letter and resume.
  • Offer more than just money (opportunities to grow, training and education options, performance rewards, etc.).
  • Receive help from staffing experts that specialize in manufacturing.


Alternative Staffing has been specializing in finding strong employees for the manufacturing industry for over 25 years. Because of that, we have gathered a lot of intel on the type of individuals that thrive in manufacturing careers. Allowing us to do your candidates’ initial screening process ensures that you are only ever interviewing people at a skill level of your choosing. We also take care of:

  • Background checks
  • HR coverage and maintenance
  • Employee benefits
  • Payroll
  • Replacing the employee if needed


Large employers should consider onsite vaccination programs, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said in recent guidance.


COVID-19 Vaccination Resources

“Most employers that choose to mandate or even strongly encourage vaccines should rely on pharmacies and other health care providers to administer vaccinations to employees and then simply request proof of vaccination instead of administering or hosting the administration of the vaccine themselves,” said Lindsay Ryan, an attorney with Polsinelli in Los Angeles.

Nonetheless, she added, for health care or other large employers that have the space and resources to host or contract with a third party to operate an onsite clinic, doing so can help encourage vaccination. Onsite clinics make vaccination “convenient and accessible and help reduce the time and cost associated with employees traveling offsite for vaccination,” Ryan said. “However, hosting an onsite vaccination center also presents increased liability risks that must be carefully considered.”

CDC Guidance

If an employer decides to host onsite COVID-19 vaccinations, the planning process should include input from management, HR, employees and, if present, labor representatives, the CDC noted.

Employers considering an onsite clinic should contact the health department in their jurisdiction for guidance.

Employers may want to use a community vaccination provider or vendor. Such providers typically deliver worksite flu vaccinations and are expanding to provide COVID-19 vaccination, the CDC said. The providers have trained nursing staff available and can report vaccine administration data to immunization registries.

Vaccination providers must prepare to monitor for and manage potential allergic reactions after vaccination.

Workplace vaccination clinics must offer vaccinations at no charge and during work hours, the CDC said.

The CDC recommended that employers provide easy access to vaccination for all people working at the workplace, even if they are contractors or temporary employees.

In addition, the CDC recommended staggering employee vaccination to avoid worker shortages due to vaccine side effects.

For those receiving a two-dose vaccine, staggering may be more important for the second dose, after which side effects are more frequent. Facilities may consider staggering vaccination for employees in the same job category or who work in the same area of a facility. “Staggering vaccination for employees may cause delays in vaccinating your staff, and the decision to stagger vaccination will need to be weighed against potential inconveniences that might reduce vaccine acceptance,” the CDC said.

Prioritization Plan

Employers with onsite clinics should prioritize who gets vaccinated first if there is not enough vaccine supply for all workers eligible within a phase, the CDC recommended. Prioritization should be done according to risk, age or underlying health condition and not by worker status (i.e., employee versus contractor), the CDC said.

“Don’t allow employees, contractors, owners or anyone else associated with the business to skip ahead in the vaccine line,” said Robin Samuel, an attorney with Baker McKenzie in Los Angeles. Vaccines should be administered to those who are eligible to receive them under state and local orders.

“Employer clinics should plan so that doses are not wasted at the end of the day,” he added. He said employers should create waiting lists prioritizing who’s eligible so that missed appointments don’t lead to wasted doses that cannot be refrozen or put back into vials once drawn into syringes.

If there aren’t enough qualified employees to receive allocated doses each day, employers should have a backup plan for transferring the leftover doses to nearby hospitals, clinics and other places that can administer them that same day, he said. “In a worst-case scenario, doses should be given to others who may not yet qualify if there is no way to administer the doses to eligible persons, but this shouldn’t happen with adequate planning.”

Legal Considerations

“Large employers probably tend to have advantages for managing the legal and logistical complexities associated with hosting an onsite vaccination clinic,” said Jill Cohen, an attorney with Eckert Seamans in Princeton, N.J.

She said potential laws that may be triggered by onsite clinics include the Americans with Disabilities Act with respect to pre-vaccine screening medical or disability-related inquiries, and workers’ compensation laws when an employee has an adverse reaction to a vaccine.

“Medical information must remain confidential,” said Katherine Dudley Helms, an attorney with Ogletree Deakins in Columbia, S.C. “If you use a third-party provider, be sure it has a system for handling confidential medical information. Have things set up so others do not see or overhear medical information.”

She added, “Communicate clearly why this is being done. If it remains voluntary, communicate that.”

Employers should work with their attorneys to ensure their companies are considered “program planners” as defined in the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness (PREP) Act, Samuel said. All those who administer vaccines onsite should be “qualified persons” under the PREP Act. “This federal statute provides broad immunity to employers and qualified persons who administer COVID-19 vaccines in the workplace, but only if they fall within the statute’s definitions,” he noted.