In the weeks since the novel coronavirus was declared a global pandemic, employment in the United States has undergone a number of noticeable changes. As a result of state-issued stay-at-home orders, the closure of non-essential businesses, and an economic downturn, unemployment has skyrocketed. As a result, more and more jobseekers are on the hunt for remote work. And while the United States certainly isn’t seeing a boom in available jobs, there are companies hiring for work-from-home jobs right now.
While traditional in-office positions may have long dominated the job scene, the recent public health crisis and subsequent closure of offices, schools and non-essential businesses has led to a spike in interest around remote roles. In fact, Paul Wolfe, Indeed’s senior vice president of Global Human Resources recently told ABC7 News that the employment-related search engine saw inquiries into remote positions grow significantly since the coronavirus pandemic. According to Wolfe, searches on Indeed for the phrase “working from home” and its abbreviated form of “WFH” grew by almost 600% in a recent six-week period.
What’s more, data from the Department of Labor has shown that more than 3 million workers have filed initial unemployment claims for at least five consecutive weeks. In total, at least 26.5 million workers had filed jobless claims as of mid-April. So it’s really no surprise there are a greater number of job seekers looking for remote, or work-from-home, positions. And, fortunately, here are 10 companies currently hiring for such positions.
Humana has long seen the benefits of enabling employees to work remote. In fact, Humana has reported that, during typical times (as in pre-coronavirus outbreak), roughly 47% of its workforce work remote.
The health insurance company has since expanded its list of remote roles and increased its efforts to keep employees feeling connected and effective while they work from home. Currently, the company appears to be hiring for more than 100 work-from-home roles spread across sales, product development, member quality, care operations, technology, market strategy, and more.
CVS Health currently has dozens of open jobs classified as work-from-home positions, according to a peek at the healthcare company’s careers portal. While it’s not clear if these jobs will continue to be based remotely, it’s certainly something worth looking into. Romper found ads seeking district leaders, call center technical support reps, incident response advisors, patient care technicians, and more — all advertised as work from home positions.
If you’ve heard of K-12 (as in, kindergarten through 12th grade) but not K12, let’s fill you in. K12 is a leading provider of online curriculum and learning programs. At the moment, the education company is hiring for more than 40 remote positions across both its corporate and school staff sectors.
When browsing the company’s career portal, interested work-from-home jobseekers should filter results by those that have a “virtual” location.
According to listings on Amazon’s virtual careers page, open positions range from solutions architects to sales, advertising, and account management. The technology company also has a number of virtual positions available in Human Resources, marketing and PR, and project or product management.
While headquartered in San Francisco, California, the cloud-based customer relationship management software company Salesforce appears to be hiring for more than a hundred remote positions. Available remote jobs include positions within wealth and asset management, marketing strategy, senior management, sales, and solution engineering.
Another software company with an interest in cloud-based customer relationship management that’s currently hiring remote workers is Hubspot. What’s more, the company has always had an interest and welcoming attitude toward remote workers.
The company is currently looking to fill dozens of remote, part-time bookkeeping and accounting services positions. Check out Supporting Strategies’ online career portal for additional information.
The cloud call center Liveops offers unique work-from-home call center career opportunities that enable workers to set their own schedule and work as much, or as little, as they want. While the company doesn’t currently have an abundance of open positions at the moment, they do have a few work-from-home openings they’re eager to fill.
A quick search on Citizen Bank’s career portal turned up more than 250 positions that are either already classified as work-at-home or open to accepting remote candidates. These ranged from wholesale account executive roles and salesforce engineers to home mortgage retail underwriters and consumer operations executives.
While it’s impossible to predict the future of work-from-home jobs or even which companies or industries will continue to hire in the coming weeks and months, it’s at least somewhat promising that there are still remote positions out there.
More than26 million Americans have lost their jobsdue to the coronavirus crisis, as hundreds of thousands of businesses have been forced to close or cut back on their hours and operations. And as the nation continues to shelter in place and practice social distancing, the slowdown or suspension of so many aspects of everyday life has caused a massive reduction of economic activity and consumer spending.
As a result, millions of employees have had their hours cut, been laid off or furloughed. Entire industries like restaurants, retail, hospitality, nightlife and live entertainment have been upended. Congress has passed an aggressive program of expanded unemployment benefits to help keep money flowing to people while the economy is paused. But the newly unemployed are facing widespread confusion and inconsistency from America’s overwhelmed systems.
How are people dealing with the realities of filing for unemployment and navigating the system of unemployment benefits during COVID-19? Just as in every other crisis, Americans are approaching this situation with adaptability, resilience and hope.
From New York to Ohio to California, livelihoods have been affected by the coronavirus pandemic. Here are three stories, followed by tips you can use to navigate filing for unemployment.
Dancer, Singer, Nightlife Maven: miss al boogie
Allyson Lynch is a dancer, actor and singer/songwriter based in New York City who is known in the dance scene by her artist name of miss al boogie. A year ago, Allyson quit her former full-time job to continue building her own business as a freelance creative, dancer, instructor and performer. She’s been doing creative gigs and teaching dance classes all over New York, and recently became a member of SAG-AFTRA after being cast for an appearance in the acclaimed Amazon Prime Video series,Hunters.
But when the pandemic hit, Allyson’s business as a creative gig worker took a hit, too. So many of the places and things that people like Allyson need for making a living—dance studios, film sets, real-life interaction—are currently shut down.
Fortunately, because of the recentlyexpanded unemployment benefitsthat were passed by Congress as part of the coronavirus relief package, freelancers and gig workers like Allyson are now able to apply for unemployment. But she says the process has not been easy.
“I feel like the unemployment system really doesn’t understand gig work,” Allyson says. “I have been working in New York for years, and I had to apply for unemployment once before back in 2014, so I already had an account in the system. But now that I’m a full-time freelancer, I feel like the system is set up as if it assumes that everyone has just one employer or place of work.”
When Allyson first applied for unemployment benefits, she had to select an option describing her previous employer. That’s a complicated question to answer if you’re a freelancer who might work on dozens of projects per year.
“Even if you freelance or have multiple part-time jobs with W-2 income, when you go to the website to apply for benefits, the system is trying to make you choose ‘what’s your job’ and makes you choose one place of work,” Allyson says. “There’s no easy way to just get recognized as a freelancer in the unemployment system. Even in New York! Where there are lots of creative jobs and lots of people working as freelancers.”
Allyson is not sure yet how much money she will receive from her unemployment benefits; with the expanded benefits from the stimulus bill, she thinks she might get a combined total of $900 per week once all the money starts coming in. She also would like to see more clarity from the government on what the expectations and eligibility requirements for drawing unemployment are.
“Before the pandemic, you could not collect unemployment unless you were actively seeking work,” Allyson says. “So I had some confusion about that, like, am I supposed to be looking for a job right now? I’ve claimed weekly benefits twice and it was doing a little psychological number on me. Like, how can we look for work if we’re not allowed to leave home?”
Fortunately, one of the provisions of the coronavirus relief package is that recipients of unemployment benefits do not have to be actively seeking work. So if you’re unemployed right now, you don’t have to worry about the usual process of demonstrating to the government that you’re trying to find a new job. If you’re asked to stay home, you can do so.
Despite the challenges of being a freelancer in a system designed for employees, Allyson is grateful for the new unemployment benefits. “If it wasn’t for this stimulus bill, it might have been hard for me to qualify,” Allyson says. “And I’ve actually been grateful to be able to be home and use my time in a different, constructive way.”
“I’m setting intentions and demarcations for what kinds of dance skills I want to work on. I’m working on my music and writing songs. I’m teaching dance classes on Instagram Live and it’s been a great way to connect with people,” says Allyson. “And I don’t want to sound like I’m in ‘hustle mode’ all the time. Sometimes I have hard days, and sad days, and days where I take a lot of naps.”
Although she’s found ways to stay active during this stressful time, Allyson misses her usual work routine, her friends and her social life as an avid dancer and clubgoer. She’s also worried for her friends’ health and safety, in what has been the epicenter of America’s coronavirus crisis.
“I know people who are sick with it, I know people who have died of it,” Allyson says. “This is not going to be easy. We’ve lost so many wonderful people and we’re going to lose more. My biggest priority is to not get sick. Everything else is secondary.”
If you are a gig worker, freelancer, self-employed individual or independent contractor, you now are likely to be eligible for unemployment benefits that you might not have been able to receive before.
The CARES Act has provisions providing for expanded unemployment benefits of up to $600 per week of additional payment for a period of up to four months.
You do not have to be actively looking for work in order to receive unemployment benefits; the government has changed the requirements due to the extraordinary circumstances of the pandemic.
Paul Horan: Retail Veteran
Paul Horan works as a shoe salesman at a high-end retailer in Cleveland. For the past eight years he’s been selling shoes on commission, and he’s made a decent living. But the coronavirus crisis has forced his employer to shut down for in-store shopping, and, on March 16, Paul filed for unemployment.
Paul says that his employer tried their best to manage the situation and help their employees. The company gave everyone three weeks of special “store closure pay,” created an employee relief fund to help people who were in dire straits or on the verge of eviction and the company is keeping everyone on their health insurance through the end of May. Paul hasn’t technically been “fired,” but his hours have been cut to zero.
“They furloughed some employees, but some of us are just classified as ‘unscheduled’ and I don’t fully know what that means,” Paul says. “If everyone was being treated the same, I suppose you wouldn’t have two designations. I wonder if some of us are at more risk of being laid off. My co-workers are coming to the realization that this isn’t gonna be over in a month or two.”
Even aside from the financial concerns of being out of work, Paul has a health issue that makes him more vulnerable to the virus. So he cannot take the risk of going in to work, even if his store were still open for business. He worries about what might happen if the economic crisis continues, and he loses his health insurance coverage at the end of May.
“My company was offering to have us come in and keep working and do web fulfillment for online orders, but the pay was only $12 an hour,” Paul says. “I usually make more than that. When we make commissions, we might be making $25 or $28 an hour.”
Rather than take the risk of going to work and catching the coronavirus, Paul filed for unemployment. Like so many other newly jobless people during a time of unprecedented demand on the unemployment systems, he found the system to be unpredictable and clunky.
“I was still working when I filed for unemployment, because they told us we could cite reduction of hours as a reason to claim unemployment, instead of being laid off,” Paul said. “It took three to four weeks to get my first unemployment claim processed, and so much depends on which processing center it gets routed to. I know people who are laid off, but who haven’t filed yet. My sister filed on the same day as me, but her claim is still pending. Maybe she had to reopen and add more information.”
With so many changes happening so fast from the state and federal levels, the system in Ohio and most other states appears to be overwhelmed. Paul was able to navigate through the confusion, and is currently receiving a weekly unemployment check of about $430 per week, which is close to the Ohio maximum benefit after taxes are taken out. He has not yet started to receive the additional $600 a week in expanded benefits from the stimulus package, but he thinks he will qualify for that amount, too.
“If I can eventually get to $1,000 a week of benefits, that would be comfortable, but it might only last through the end of July,” Paul says. “And, in a way, I’m lucky because of where I live. Every state does unemployment differently. Here in Ohio, our max benefit is $480 a week. That’s OK but long-term it’s not gonna help. Florida is only like $275 a week.”
And even with the maximum level of unemployment benefits, Paul’s future feels painfully uncertain.
“I don’t feel secure, and I’m a little worried,” Paul says. “I’ve been living paycheck to paycheck. I had nothing in savings. I was waiting on state and federal tax refunds to give me some cash in the bank. For now, I’m trying to not spend. I’m only spending money on rent, bills and food, and that’s it.”
Paul would like to go back to work, but he’s not sure if or when his store will reopen, or if he’ll feel safe going to work anytime soon. “If the U.S. can get a widespread COVID-19 testing system set up, to the point where we know who has the virus and who doesn’t, to the point where I can feel safe going to work? Then I would be totally happy to get back to work,” Paul says. “But even if we had widespread testing tomorrow, I’m not sure how long it will take for people to feel comfortable shopping again.”
Paul also worries that the coronavirus crisis could accelerate the trend of in-store retail going away, as more people shop online. “My income as a shoe salesman depends, literally, on foot traffic,” Paul says. “We rely upon the in-store customer service experience. If people stop going to stores because they’re afraid of getting sick, I can’t do what I do for a living anymore. Even if I can go back to work in June or July or August, if I’m only making $600 a week, that’s barely enough to pay my bills.”
Apply for unemployment as soon as you become eligible. If your work hours have been cut, or if you have been laid off or furloughed from your job, you may be eligible for unemployment benefits.
Talk with your employer and check with your state unemployment system’s website for more details about your specific state’s application requirements and how much money you can expect to receive from unemployment benefits.
If you are concerned about losing your employer-sponsored health insurance coverage, keep in mind that if you lose your job-based coverage, this is considered aqualifying life eventthat gives you the right to obtain new health insurance, even if it’s outside of the usual annual enrollment period. If you lose your health insurance because of a layoff, or if your employer stops providing health insurance, you will be able to apply for new health insurance coverage, including subsidized and lower cost premiums, atHealthCare.gov.
Austin, who asked that we not use his last name because he didn’t want to bring unwanted attention to his employers, lives in Los Angeles. Both of his sources of income have been shut down by the coronavirus pandemic.
His day job and primary income is as a technician for a company that repairs and services commercial-grade coffee and espresso machines for the restaurant industry; the restaurant industry has been one of the hardest hit by the recent shutdown. Although he’s not been laid off and is still classified as “on call,” his employer has had to cut his work hours significantly.
In addition to his work as a coffee repair technician, Austin makes music as a hip-hop artist and coaches youth basketball for a travel team. His income as a basketball coach has also been interrupted by the economic shutdown.
“This last year has been a tornado, even before the pandemic,” Austin says. “Last May, the company I worked for got bought by a big corporation. They told us our jobs were safe. It turns out, that was a lie. We all got laid off. For the next six months of 2019, I was on unemployment. I applied for hundreds of jobs, and then I finally got hired by my current employer. I have only been at this job for three months. Then this pandemic happened, and wiped out my new source of income.”
Austin says that even as someone who is experienced with navigating the unemployment system during “normal” times, he has found the current situation to be complex and frustrating. But the good news is: California appears to already be set up to offer the newly expanded unemployment benefits that were approved as part of the CARES Act.
“The unemployment portal is still the same as it was last year, but it does say you can get the newly approved $600 a week [through July], along with the $450 max weekly benefit that they regularly offer,” Austin says. “But California is supposedly also setting up a new separate system and presumably a new website for the $600 per week. It’s all kind of confusing.”
Austin filed for unemployment a week ago, now that his hours have been cut, but, because he was already on unemployment for so much of 2019, he’s not sure how much money he’ll qualify for or when the benefits might arrive.
“I haven’t seen a link or tab on the state website where I can open a new claim,” Austin says. “I asked about it via email, and they told me that because I was already on unemployment for most of 2019, there’s no option for me to file a new claim, but I can reopen a claim. So I did that, and I’m hoping that they will extend my 2019 unemployment claim and allot me more money for 2020.”
Austin says that even before the pandemic, it was often difficult to get through to the unemployment system by phone, with multiple confusing automated phone menus.
“I haven’t been able to get through to the unemployment system via phone, because they’re just flooded,” Austin says. “Their phone system leads to dead ends every single time and hangs up on you. When you call unemployment, there are two distinct voices: There’s a one-and-a-half minute message, talking about how the call volume is too high, and then it hangs up on you. And then there’s another that makes you navigate multiple menus, and you think you’re getting where you’re going, and then it hangs up on you. It’s like an ouroboros of not being able to get in touch with people.”
Austin worries for the future of the restaurant industry that his company serves. “One of the things we’ve been doing at my job lately is helping restaurants shut down that have had to go out of business because of this crisis, and it’s heartbreaking,” Austin says. “Here in L.A., we’re seeing some classic restaurants go out of business that have been open since the 1930s. What does that do to people? Restaurants have memories. So many of people’s life events and celebrations happen at restaurants.”
Austin also is concerned for the mental health impacts of mass unemployment. “When I was on unemployment for six months, my self-worth was hit hard,” Austin says. “It’s not fun to not have a job. It’s hard. You have to keep navigating this system. Even if you’re technically guaranteed to get enough benefits to pay your bills, it’s not fun or inspiring to be sitting at home living on government money. People take pride in doing work. People don’t want to be sitting around—it’s not good for your mind.”
Most of all, Austin misses coaching his basketball team: “I really, really miss basketball. I miss helping my kids, I miss all those little moments as a team, all those high fives and hugs, cheering ’em on. You realize how much those interactions mean to you. I’m not gonna take that for granted again.”
State unemployment systems have been overwhelmed by the surge of demand from millions of newly laid off people. But keep trying to call and/or applying online. States like California are working to implement new tools and systems to accommodate the need.
If you have been recently unemployed, or just recently started a new job, you may still be able to qualify for the expanded unemployment benefits from the coronavirus relief package. The rules and requirements are less strict than they used to be.
Even if you have uncertainty about how much money you may qualify for, go ahead and apply for unemployment as soon as you can. Getting the process started early can help you get paid faster.
Unemployment Filing Tips
If you need to file for unemployment, here are a few tips based on Allyson, Paul and Austin’s experiences:
Unemployment benefits vary by state.Go to your state’s unemployment office website to find eligibility and coverage details and to see what the process is to file a claim.
Apply as soon as possible.As soon as you get laid off or have your hours cut, try to apply for unemployment as early as you are eligible. This can get you into the system and help get money into your bank account faster. You shouldn’t feel bad about filing for unemployment: Millions and millions of people are suddenly in this situation because of the pandemic, not because they’re bad employees or undeserving of help. And the unemployment benefits are funds that you helped pay for with your payroll taxes.
Be prepared to wait.People all over the U.S. are filing for unemployment in massive numbers right now, and the unemployment systems are being overwhelmed. You may want to try applying online at off-peak hours, or calling in on a designated day. For example, some states are asking applicants toapply for unemployment on staggered days, based on the first letter of their last names.
You may receive more money than you expect.Depending on your current income and your state, you could end up receiving more money from unemployment than you earned working at your job. For up to four months, the provisions of the CARES Act provide an additional $600 per week benefit.
Save some money for the tax man.Unemployment benefits are subject to federal income tax. So you may want to set aside some of the funds, make estimated tax payments or elect to have 10% of your unemployment payment withheld for federal taxes.
America has never seen so many people thrown into unemployment so fast. Whatever your situation, be persistent in applying for the benefits you deserve, and try to stay safe, sane and healthy during this challenging time.
NEW DELHI: The government has decided to extend the relaxed connectivity norms for ‘work from home’, applicable on IT and BPO companies, till July 31 from the current April 30, amid the coronavirus pandemic. Coronavirus outbreak: Live updates Industry body Nasscom said the decision to extend the timelines on relaxed norms for other service providers (OSPs) to facilitate ‘work from home’ will help IT and BPO firms plan their strategy of bringing back workforce to offices, in a gradual and phased manner. Earlier on Tuesday, IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad told reporters, “I have relaxed norms for working from home … it was to end on April 30, I have extended it to July 31”. In March, the DoT relaxed certain norms for OSPs till April 30 to facilitate work from home (WFH) amid the coronavirus pandemic. This included exemptions in requirement of security deposit and agreement for WFH facility for OSPs (primarily IT and IT-enabled services companies). Earlier, companies were not allowed to connect office Virtual Private Network to home infrastructure, a rule that was subsequently relaxed in view of the coronavirus pandemic. “Given that work-from-home is going to be a new normal for sometime, the decision to extend timelines is a welcome move. It will help companies plan their return-to-office strategy in a phased manner. Now that the deadline is being extended to July, companies too can plan their workforce returning to office, in the same way,” Nasscom Senior Vice-President and Chief Strategy Officer Sangeeta Gupta told PTI. Currently, over 90 per cent of IT workforce is working from home and only those performing critical functions are going to offices. More on Covid-19 Meanwhile, during his interaction with states to discuss COVID-19 challenges, tech innovations and roadmap for the IT and electronics sector, Prasad also urged states’ IT ministers to move swiftly and promote electronics manufacturing through pro-investment initiatives, to tap a “great opportunity” that now beckons India, in view of changing business dynamics due to COVID-19. The minister also directed that data from Aarogya Setu app should be made available online to the states right up-to district officials, in line with suggestions made by states. Prasad said states have been highly-appreciative of Aarogya Setu app, and that a similar solution for feature phones is in the works, and will be launched shortly. The meeting was attended by chief ministers of Haryana and Sikkim, deputy chief ministers of Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Karnataka, who are also in charge of the IT department in their respective states, an official release said. Later while speaking to reporters, Prasad said his ministry is constantly monitoring spread of fake news on social media platforms and that companies have told the government of strong progress they have made in removing such content. He cautioned that any inaction by companies in clamping down on fake news would be met with consequences at the Centre and state levels, as well as police action. The minister said products coming from any country, particularly China, should be subject to stringent security audit and verification. “One thing is clear … we are not against any country, we are only pro-India, we are committed to India and will take measures to create opportunities for India. As regards security initiative … any product coming from any country, particularly China, we expect proper security audit and verification,” Prasad said replying to a specific query on India’s stance on Chinese products. The minister also underlined the government’s commitment to promote electronics manufacturing, in a big way. “A great opportunity beckons India, and we already have policies in place. This is India’s opportunity, where Centre and States Government should move together. I have urged state IT ministers that they should also undertake pro-investment initiatives,” he said. The minister noted that three schemes — Production Linked Incentive 2.0, Electronics Manufacturing Clusters, and Scheme for Promotion of Manufacturing of Electronic Components and Semiconductors (SPECS) — have been notified by the Centre in order to attract investments in the electronics manufacturing sector, and appealed to states to supplement these with their schemes.
These are the keys to successfully managing a staff that is working from home and keeping its social distance.
April 28, 2020 4 min read
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.
Though remote work has risen steadily in recent years, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, full-time work from home is still a surprisingly new concept for more than two-thirds of Americans. And managing a staff virtually calls for a modified mindset, perhaps more than many leaders understand or appreciate, especially during a global pandemic.
Here are three ways leaders can emotionally support employees during this difficult time.
1. Exhibit empathy
Your organization’s people are its most valuable resource.
Some employees are juggling endless distractions. School is closed. Parents struggle to hold down jobs and perform as homeschool teachers — simultaneously! No more school lunches mean kids need to be fed, the fridge needs to be stocked, shopping needs to get done and someone needs to find toilet paper! Through these bizarre and unsettling times, try listening to your employees’ newfound challenges and express that you are there to support them in any way they need. Perhaps, when appropriate, can you even find the humor in this “new normal”?
Other employees live alone. They may feel isolated and lack a sufficient amount of work to accomplish. Perhaps they manned your firm’s front desk and their job entailed checking corporate visitors in and out. Suddenly their main role has vanished. Are there new projects you can assign to this team member to keep productivity high and demonstrate to this worker that they are still a valued team member?
2. Resist micro-managing work-from-home employees
Since you’re no longer encountering your employees face-to-face, it’s natural to be curious about how engaged your staff is with their work-related projects and timelines. How and when can they be producing for the company with so important things they need to do to keep themselves and their loved ones safe?
Interestingly, according to Gallup, 70 percent of employee engagement is directly related to effective leadership. Research shows it’s best to take a situational approach to your role as a leader and adapt to the circumstances your team may be facing. Thus, assume your staff is doing the best they can. Though productivity may not be as robust as it was when your staff was physically present in the office, can deadlines be adjusted to meet these unprecedented times? The best leaders do not focus on “inputs,” i.e., what their team members may or may not be doing at any one moment in time. They instead focus on overall “outputs” and team-related accomplishments.
3. Pay special attention to your newest team members
The old adage still holds true: “You never get a second chance to make a first impression.” Research shows nearly 70 percent of employees are more likely to remain with a company three or more years if they have a positive onboarding experience. Conversely, nearly 20 percent of employees who leave a company do so within their first 45 days on the job. Thus, most effective organizations continually practice onboarding for new hires during the entire first year of employment.
What specific steps can you take for new recruits while working from home? Schedule personal check-ins at least once a week to ensure they have access to the systems, processes, procedures and people they need to succeed in their role. This goes not just for employees new to the company, but also for young folks just entering the workforce, as well as for people new to remote work. If your calendar tends to be packed, assign a fellow team member to take new team members under their wing to answer questions when you’re tied up. This not only supports the new hire, but it also empowers the veteran and shows that you value their longevity and expertise.
The best leaders, according to Gallup, motivate employees, build trust-based relationships and have the ability to overcome adversity. The good news for you as a manager, amid all of the bad news of late, each of these attributes can be exhibited virtually.
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WATERBURY — Local companies are re-evaluating their long term work-from-home policies in light of the coronavirus pandemic. The disease has forced companies to shutter their offices and establish robust work-from-home infrastructure to keep productive as Connecticut’s lockdown stretches into a second month. “I think the possibility does exist that, moving forward, we will allow that […]
The government has further extended the relaxation of work from home (WFH) rules for the IT-ITeS sector till July 31 allowing companies to enable its workforce function smoothly. The department of telecommunications (DoT) had earlier relaxed certain rules for other service providers (OSPs), which are primarily IT and IT-enabled services companies, till April 30 to facilitate WFH during the lockdown.
The IT industry had sought the relaxation in norms from government to facilitate business continuity. Communications and IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said the WFH norms will be relaxed till July 31 now. He shared data from Nasscom, which stated that 85% of India’s IT workforce is doing a good job while working from home.
Meanwhile, the government is also working towards bringing in new rules regarding WFH as going forward, it will be more prevalent. Telecom secretary Anshu Prakash told Financial Express that a meeting with industry stakeholders, including Nasscom, took place on Monday to understand about the requirements. “The new rules will be notified before July 31 after proper consultation with all stakeholders,” Prakash said.
The government has exempted the requirement of security deposit and agreement for WFH facility for OSPs. Also, the requirement of seeking prior permission for WFH facility was exempted. Another exemption includes the requirement of authorised Service Providers Provisioned secured VPN (PPVPN). “During this period, the OSPs are permitted to use secured VPN (virtual private network) configured using ‘static IP’ address by themselves for interconnection between home agent position and OSP Centre with pre-defined locations,” the government order said.
It must be mentioned that most of the IT sector companies are expected to let a majority of its workforce to WFH in the coming few months. The notification of new guidelines is necessary to provide clarity to the companies.
“Depending on the jobs they’re applying for, many employers have put a hold on their hiring processes at this time,” Collins said in the email to MLive. “Please be patient, as it may take longer to hear back from hiring managers.”
In an email from the Southeast Business Services Coordinator, Amber Collins, she said that this is number down from about 900 earlier before the pandemic began.
Most jobs are currently looking for CDL qualified drivers, forklift operators, healthcare workers, nurse aids, as well as delivery drivers and food service workers.
There’s nothing quite like the smell of fresh bread baking in the oven. It’s one of those small pleasures in life worthy of savoring. Baking with yeast can intimidate some bakers, but there’s no need to deny yourself when there are tasty alternatives.
Whether your pantry is running low on yeast, or you prefer to bake without it, these 20 sweet and savory no-yeast bread recipes will give you many delectable options to try. They’ll also come in handy if you’re hosting an intimate Mother’s Day brunch, lunch, or dinner at home this year and need some last-minute rolls, buns, or quick breads.
Try sweet breads such as Blueberry Yogurt Bread and Chocolate Chip Filled Banana Bread. Then there are savory options such as Irish Soda Bread and Pimento Cheese Beer Bread. There’s even a homemade, no-yeast white bread recipe that’s certain to elevate your sandwich menu. Scroll through the gallery and make your bread-baking plan today.
His home has been called “the best Skype room on all of cable T.V.” It received a 9 out of 10 on the Twitter feed Room Rater (missing a 10 only because the TV was on), and that post has nearly 600 likes. Interior designer Nina CarbonedubbedFaber’s backdrop “Where it’s at,” quotingBeck, inspired by the turntable, which he told me was a gift from his wife (just one though, no microphone). Elvis Costello, The Police, Led Zeppelin and the Beatles are on heavy rotation.
“It was not something I thought about at all,” Faber said regarding his on-air backdrop. But a cameraman who came to set up the home equipment declared the home office too bright. “That’s how I ended up at my dining room table.”
The inviting scene is the work of interior designerBeverly Bartfeld, a close friend of Faber and his wife, who also designed the family’shome in NYC.
Having an expanse of the Long Island home in view—rather than a jarringly-close white wall or bookcase (or worse, a plant sprouting from the head)—seems to be key to the home’s appeal.
“It’s pretty funny—friends and sources, people I’m on the phone with all day, people I haven’t spoken to in a while, the first thing they say is, ‘I love your house,’” Faber said.
He notes that the design has more to do with Bartfeld’s eye than some unattainable price tag.
“It’s not speaking to some sort of incredible excess,” Faber said. “All these things can be ordered out of catalogs.”
More than anything fancy, he loves the relaxed overall feel of the home, which is a vibe we can all benefit from the days.
Below, Bartfeld talks about her career, how she worked with Faber (O.K., mostly his wife, journalist Jenny Harris), how she’s surviving the quarantine, and how you, too, can have a Zoom-ready home that will not embarrass in meetings with your boss.
How did you get started in interior design?
“From a young age, I have always been artistic. I remember constantly rearranging the furniture in my parents’ apartment when I was growing up in order to change the look of the rooms. I went to the Fiorella Laguardia High School in NYC for art and then went to the University of Michigan School of Art. I studied fine arts and graphic design. Then I went on to study interior design at Parsons. I worked for several well-known designers after Parsons and then went out on my own 15 years ago.”
Viewers have been loving David Faber’s interior design as he broadcasts from home. How would you describe his style?
“Like many of my clients, his style is sophisticated, elegant and relaxed. There is a mix of materials, finishes and styles that all work together.”
Can you talk about your approach to designing his home?
“I always start a design project by understanding my clients’ needs and lifestyles, and I am always very honest about what I like and what I don’t like! I send potential clients tomy site to make sure they like my work. I was already friends with the Fabers, so that made our interactions very relaxed and open. They knew my style and preferences already, and I knew how they live, so that always makes the working relationship easier. I think design should be comfortable and practical and if someone hires me they already like my style and approach. I don’t believe things have to be expensive to be beautiful. I like to mix old and new things.”
Why do you think the look is so appealing to viewers?
“I think the space looks inviting, clean and homey, and the camera angle shows the depth and flow of the space. It feels like a home that anyone would be happy to live and work in. It has a feeling of calm maturity, which is particularly important during this time.”
What are some of the comments viewers have made about his interior style?
“You’ll have to ask him! [See above] But in general people think that the space looks refreshing and sophisticated, but not fancy. The chairs, rug, art and the classic turntable look terrific together.”
Do you have any tips for making your home look great while you’re on conference or zoom calls?
“If possible, its best to have either a plain or colorful background… and certainly not too much clutter. My daughter takes her high school classes on Zoom and we have re-organized the background of her room with some simple colorful pillows and it looks terrific on camera!”
You have a new shop in Montauk… how are you dealing with it being closed during the pandemic?
“I have been spending a lot of time there getting Indy Home ready for when it can open… whenever that is! And in the meantime, our website sales are really good, as people want to make their homes more comfortable now that they are spending all their time there. A lot of people are nesting and fixing up areas in their house that they have not previously had time to focus on. Several of my NYC-based clients have me helping them ‘remotely’ decorate their second homes. Little fixes like a new area rug, or bright interesting pillows, or a unique bench or chair can make a huge positive difference in a home.”
While school and business interactions have flooded the internet as societies adjust to the COVID-19 pandemic, regulations protecting biometric data privacy have not been relaxed, which means some of these online interactions may be risking fines or other regulatory action, JD Supra reports.
In an article by Carlos Arévalo and Molly Arranz of SmithAmundsen LLC, accusations that Google has violated the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) and the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) are held up as examples of the risk to companies as new activities are moved online. COPPA applies to all children across the U.S. under the age of 13.
Businesses using online conferencing or other communication platforms are advised to take several steps before allowing recordings or any interaction that could involve facial or voice data. Determining what biometric information is being collected, including identifiers that are collected simply through voice or video recordings, is the first step. Disclosures currently in place should be evaluated, and express written consent obtained from all customers, employees, and participants for any biometric information that is being collected and stored. A written policy which establishes data retention schedules and deletion procedures should not only be developed, but publicly available, and federal regulations, including COPPA, must not be forgotten in the attempt to deal with state laws.
The state law on biometric privacy that has generated the most litigation, BIPA, could have national implications, attorneys Kenneth D. Walsh and Mary Smigielski of Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith LLP write for Bloomberg Law.
Google has been sued in the Northern District of California for alleged violations of both BIPA and COPPA, which demonstrates the extraterritorial reach of BIPA, according to the report.
Before taking any action to leverage biometric technology to boost physical or logical access controls, such as with facial recognition-based time and attendance or mask detection systems or fingerprint readers for employees working from home, businesses should ensure they are compliant with BIPA and any other potentially relevant regulations.
“Awareness of the requirements of BIPA is critical for any company with operations in or with a connection to Illinois,” the attorneys write, particularly as remote working and learning continue. The implications of contactless temperature scans under U.S. privacy laws is likewise considered by three attorneys from Husch Blackwell LLP for JD Supra.
With plans for returning to work including temperature screening at many businesses, as recommended by the CDC, there is a risk of unintentional privacy law violations or liability exposure. New Jersey’s Governor has also suggested temperature checks of customers entering restaurants may be required.
The attorneys consider the options of simple infrared scanners that screen temperature from a few inches away, facial recognition devices with thermal scanning, which can typically scan people further away, and wearables. State biometric privacy laws could apply to either of the latter two system types, including BIPA but statutes without private rights of action in Texas and Washington.
Information collected by the systems could also be subject to state breach notification and information security laws. Whether temperature information is defined as “medical information” under the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) is unclear, but “biometric information” is clearly defined, though CCPA does not contain the same consent requirements as BIPA. Additional burdens could potentially be generated by CCPA, however, such as procedures for disclosure and deletion of people’s information on request.
The Equal Opportunity Employment Commission (EEOC) has advised businesses that employee temperature information is confidential, and the Americans with Disabilities Act requires medical information to be stored separately from the personnel files of employees.
The attorneys conclude by recommending best practices, including understanding the device used, vetting the company providing it, understanding the data security protections provided, and preparing notices for employees and customers of any system being used.