How Coronavirus Is Affecting Staff Across Various Industries Worldwide

Since the first case of coronavirus (Covid-19) was discovered in Wuhan, China, in December 2019, various industries have been hit with a shortage of staff, causing some companies to call a halt to their work. Although most industries have experienced a reduction in workforce, a few others have also experienced a considerable rise in employment rate over the past months. For example:

The Healthcare Industry. One such industry experiencing a rise in the number of employees right now due to the coronavirus is the healthcare industry.

According to reports, countries like Greece, Iran, South Korea, Italy and China, which are most affected by the virus, have accelerated the recruitment process of staff working in hospitals, laboratories, and other places where medical assistance is needed.

In China, more hospitals are being built to cater to the growing number of infected individuals across the nation. These hospitals need qualified staff to function properly, thereby prompting the need for more employees.

The Airline Industry. A lot of airline companies have canceled flights in a bid to stop the spreading of the virus. For this reason, the number or airport staff has drastically decreased.

According to reports, Cathay Pacific, an airline company in Hong Kong, has asked its workers to take unpaid leave due to a lack of business caused by the coronavirus.

The Construction Industry. Rapid construction of new hospitals in various locations within a short period designed for the treatment of coronavirus patients has led to a rise in the number of employees in the construction industry.

Due to the continuously increasing number of infected people, more builders and engineers are employed to hasten various construction projects across the globe. In China, a 25,000-square-foot emergency hospital for the treatment of coronavirus patients was built in ten days. Many new building projects are on the way, due to an ever-increasing number of affected people that need to be admitted to a hospital and treated accordingly.

PREMIUM CONTENT: Coronavirus resource center

What Is the Way Out?

Given that there are no clear-cut ways of preventing the spread of the virus other than mass testing and self-isolation of all infected individuals, companies should begin to look into ways of continuing businesses while the country still battles the pandemic. Otherwise, the country could come to a grand halt, and the economy of the country sees a free fall.

Flexible Working Arrangement / Remote Work. For those in countries in the heat of transmission of the virus, this is the most feasible solution. Allowing employees to work from home is one of the most practical ways of preventing human-to-human transmission.

With remote work, you are not only eliminating the probability of transmission at the office but also during commutes in trains or buses. This is especially important in countries that are densely populated. In an area like mainland China with a couple of tens or hundreds in an area, people are barely inches away from each other. Bearing the fact that you can’t immediately tell who is infected or not, there is a high risk of transmitting the virus from one person to another in such densely populated areas.

With the use of technology, it can still be business-as-usual in places battered by the pandemic. The use of cloud platforms, project management tools and various chat platforms, working from home can be as seamless or perhaps even more efficient than working in a physical office.

Leave Policies. With coronavirus rearing its head worldwide, it is high time companies revisited their company policies. The last thing a company would want is for an infected individual to show up at the office just because they didn’t have enough paid leave. That doesn’t only affect the infected individual psychologically, but also puts everyone around them at risk.

If the company is more driven by results instead of the means, it wouldn’t matter where the employee works from – home or office. For employees that have come down with flu or some other forms of illness, it is imperative that they notify health authorities as quickly as possible. Unless advised by medical authorities, forcing the employee against their will into isolation should not be considered.


As much as the employee retention rate is an essential factor that companies need to keep an eye on, other circumstances, such as the coronavirus pandemic, have a way of disrupting the recruitment process and are affecting the number of employees. While there might be a shortage of staff in some industries, it is a different scenario for some others.

In the case of this recent coronavirus pandemic, sectors like healthcare and construction have experienced an increase in the number of employees. In contrast, other industries, like the airline industry, have taken a hit.

Businesses can outlive this pandemic by embracing remote work. Focus should be placed on results instead of the location from which employees carry out their work duties. With a flexible arrangement put in place, businesses can run their day-to-day activities as usual and help prevent the economy from seeing a free fall.

Josh Wardini

Josh Wardini
Josh Wardini is a community manager at WebMastersJury.

Josh Wardini

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