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City provides update on COVID-19 workforce planning

For immediate release: August 6, 2020 - 11:36am
HR20-1453

The City of Saskatoon continues to undertake workforce planning in light of COVID-19. The City’s priority has been to maintain services and jobs wherever possible while keeping the health of employees and residents top of mind. Core services are being maintained throughout the pandemic. 

“Given that such a large percentage of our workforce needs to be working in the community or interfacing with residents, we have definitely had to pivot during this time,” says David Smith, Acting Chief Human Resources Officer. “We’ve had to adjust operations in a number of ways to follow Government of Saskatchewan’s public health orders.”

Some of these changes have included: mandatory masks for employees that are unable to physically distance, reorganization of work spaces to enable more distance and add barriers, operational adjustments to allow more time for sanitization of work and public spaces. In accordance with provincial health orders and the Re-Open Saskatchewan Plan, other employees have been working from home where they can do so effectively using digital technologies.

“In preparation for a potential increase of COVID-19 cases this fall, the City is continuing to apply a high degree of caution to our workforce planning,” says Smith. “For example, we’ve recently directed those employees that can effectively work from home to continue doing so until January.”

The City is working to bring more services online and to increase its customer service capacity via phone, email and other virtual platforms. In addition to these ongoing adjustments, a formal review of operations will take place in November to consider and reassess workforce planning measures.