COVID-19 Update September 30, 2020

  • News

Since the U.S. Small Business Administration launched an online portal for loan forgiveness in early August, the agency has received more than 96,000 applications from businesses seeking to have their loans forgiven—but none have been approved, William Manger, SBA’s chief of staff and associate administrator, recently told U.S. House lawmakers.

Consequently, the U.S. Department of the Treasury has announced that it will begin forgiving loans granted to small business owners under the Paycheck Protection Program, expecting a quick approval process for loans under $2 million. After so many banks and borrowers complained that the process has been bogged down, the government is aiming for completion by late this week or early next week.

When President Trump issued an executive order on September 22 on “Combating Race and Sex Stereotyping,” the federal contractor community was concerned about what new requirements might be added to their already full plates. New contract clause required for contracts entered into on or after November 21, 2020, and upcoming regulations regarding diversity training, workshops, or similar programs to ensure the materials do not “inculcate” in the contractor’s employees “any form of race or sex-stereotyping or race or sex scapegoating.”

In a recent survey, approximately 80% of the more formal dressing remote workers said they felt productive throughout the day, compared to just 70% of those in gym clothes and 50% of those in pajamas. When considering how to address dress codes in this new work environment, employers should make sure they don’t unlawfully discriminate or violate National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) rights.

While recruiters faced arguably some of the biggest adjustments in transitioning the interviewing and onboarding of job candidates to virtual environments, their counterparts in the learning and development, employee coaching, and skills certification spaces faced the equally challenging task of transporting their in-person operations online with little time to prepare. As the dust begins to settle six months into the pandemic, leaders of those functions are conducting after-action reviews and finding lessons learned that they can apply to the future use of HR technology platforms.

Last but not least, we will have our next Delta webinar on October 15th at 3pm, so be sure to register here for the latest legislative updates that are likely to affect your business. Additionally, the next episode of our interactive vlog series, Dialed in with Delta, will center on how to work from home the right way, with expert panelists discussing everything from ergonomic design to hacker protection. Keep a look out for a link to register in the coming weeks!

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