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KPMG Announces Dynamic Risk Assessment Framework for Organizations Planning to Reopen Their Workplaces

Post-lockdown workplace culture would be drastically different from what it was when we last saw them. Social distancing will be the norm — one-to-one meetings would be a distant thought. Yes, it will take more time to recover and adjust to the new workplace culture. To help companies reopen in a staggered phase during the lockdown, KPMG has announced the Dynamic Risk Assessment Framework. Dynamic Risk Assessment Framework is a new approach that centers on a policy framework assessing community and individual risk supported by process and technological solutions.

KPMG mitigated the dynamic framework to help organizations implement approaches to bring employees back to workplaces. It includes a tech-enabled and data-driven assessment of COVID-19-related hazards at a microscopic level. The framework involves a daily evaluation of the challenges that individuals and their employers may have to navigate as they re-enter the workplace.

The five-step framework offers flexibility based on the nature of the client’s business. It assesses risk in local markets, addresses government and regulatory considerations, and provides a technology component to help executives make informed decisions.

KPMG’s framework encompasses the following 5-step approach:

Risk-based framework

KPMG has created a model that serves as a starting point for organizations to develop their own risk-based framework powered by analytic tools that calculate both community threat levels and individual risks – specifically, the risks of contracting and transmitting coronavirus (COVID-19).

At a time when reopening organizations and bringing employees back on-site is a dreaded mission, KPMG framework presents a fluid solution to overcome challenges.

Atif Zaim, Customer and Operations Services Line Leader, KPMG LLP said, “KPMG’s dynamic risk-based framework helps organizations build and execute an effective return-to-work program.”

Workforce and workplace considerations

In the short term, it is essential to critically assess and fully understand which roles can be performed remotely and which roles require a physical presence. For those returning to work, organizations need to develop and implement social distancing policies, based on CDC and other federal, state and local public health and safety guidelines.

Laura Newinski, Vice Chair of Operations and Deputy Chair-elect of KPMG LLP, added, “The introduction to the market of these capabilities will give organizations a technology-enabled, risk-based decision framework to leverage as they shape their strategies for returning their employees to offices and make other policy-based decisions. This initiative is important to KPMG as we support our clients, and to the firm itself, as we leverage the tools and framework in our own approach to workplace return.”

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Organizations will also need to consider employment and privacy laws, as well as their own policies, in determining information they request from employees on a voluntary or mandatory basis, as well as whether to allow self-certification vs. third-party verification.

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Partnering process

Once organizations, in consultation with their medical and legal advisors, have settled on a workplace safety approach and a risk framework, they will need to establish a simple and effective process to deliver services and supplies needed to protect employees, such as diagnostic testing, temperature checks and workplace sanitation.

Technology enablement/Employee logistics

Organizations will also need to enhance technology capabilities to safely bring employees back on-site. Conducting contact tracing of employees, monitoring employees for infection and establishing workplace-related processes, such as establishing entry, movement and exit controls, and enforcing social distancing, are of central importance.

Program governance

Organizations will also require agile governance that operates with clarity on decision-making protocols, and frequent communication to navigate the return of their workforce in a dynamic, fluid environment, with considerations that include: decision making with C-level engagement, streamlining communication across channels, and monitoring coordination among compliance areas and key functions that engage with the workforce.

Paul Hencoski, Healthcare and Government Solutions Practice Leader, KPMG LLP, added, “No two organizations or their risk profiles are alike, and creating a framework to address COVID-19-related impacts requires a high degree of sophisticated analytics and a firm understanding of health policy implications and business processes to help entities resume operations.”

Todd Lohr, Principal, Digital Enablement Leader, KPMG LLP, added, “KPMG’s framework provides a passport concept in a digital wallet and leverages mobile device technology, enabling employers to manage permissions for where and how employees will safely reenter the workplace.”

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