ICAEW.com works better with JavaScript enabled.

Managing your workforce

Practical guidance for employers and businesses on safeguarding health and safety in the workplace, making contingency plans for staff, and issues around holidays, pay and pensions during the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic.


The ICAEW Tax Faculty has published a range of guidance on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) which presents their understanding of this policy and how this will work, as well as those areas where clarification is still being sought.

Furlough letter templates

The ICAEW Library can provide members and students with furlough letter templates for employers covering a wide range of situations:

  • furloughing employees
  • extending the furlough period
  • ending the furlough period and return from furlough
  • denying a furlough request.

Get in touch with us at library@icaew.com to request these template letters and more.

External links

Chancellor extends furlough scheme until 31 October 2020

HM Treasury 12-05-2020

News release from HM Treasury announcing that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will be extended by a further four months. New flexibility will be introduced from August to enable furloughed workers to return to work part-time.

Furlough FAQs

CIPD 14-04-2020

Answers to 30+ frequently asked questions around furlough leave from HR experts at CIPD.

Furlough letter template

acas 09-04-2020

The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (acas) have produced a template for an agreement to temporarily send home an employee because there's no work ('furlough'). Free to download and use.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): furlough guide

CIPD 08-04-2020

Guide from CIPD which outlines the key facts about designating employees as furloughed workers and gives advice on the considerations when implementing this new type of leave.

Furlough Webinar

CIPD 03-04-2020

Hour long webinar from CIPD on furlough with a panel of experts. Includes a practical case study from a HR director on how they have implemented furlough in their organisation.

Coronavirus: your furlough questions answered

People Management 27-03-2020

Experts from People Management magazine answer some of the most pressing questions for employers about the government’s new job retention support scheme.

Holiday, pay and pensions

Health and safety in the workplace

Reopen your business safely during coronavirus (COVID-19)

GOV.UK 23-09-2020

UK government guidance to help business owners carry out a risk assessment and make sensible adjustments to ensure the safety of staff, customers and visitors. The tool uses a simple questionnaire to determine which guidelines are relevant to your size and type of business, and produces a checklist with links to more detailed information where necessary.

Coronavirus and mental health at work

Acas 18-05-2020

Guidance from Acas to help staff and employers manage their mental health at work during the coronavirus pandemic. It includes advice on working at home, support that should be offered by managers and employers, and information on an employer's duty of care.

Staying alert and safe (social distancing)

Cabinet Office 11-05-2020

Guidance issued by the Government for England as part of their plan to return life to as near normal as possible, which includes a section on businesses and venues that are still required by law to stay closed to the public.

Working safely during coronavirus

BEIS 11-05-2020

A series of guides from the Government intended to help employers, employees and the self-employed understand how to work safely during the coronavirus pandemic. The guides cover a range of different types of work, ranging from construction sites to offices.

Acas: Working from home

Acas 30-03-2020

Guidance from Acas for employers and employees when working from home because of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, highlighting both employer and employee responsibilities. It covers health and safety; equipment and technology; checking how systems are working; setting clear expectations; keeping in touch; pay and terms and conditions of employment; working from home and childcare; expenses; insurance, mortgage or rent agreements.

COVID-19: guidance for employers and businesses

Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, Public Health England 26-02-2020

Government guidance for employers and businesses on the novel coronavirus, how to help prevent spread of respiratory infections, what to do if someone suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19 has been in business settings, what advice to give to individuals who have travelled to specific areas, actions to take if staff come into contact with someone who is self-isolating or is a possible or confirmed case of COVID-19.

Data protection

ICAEW Insights

External links

Data protection and coronavirus: what you need to know

ICO 12-03-2020

Information hub from the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) with guidance on how organisations and employers can maintain data protection compliance and information security during the COVID-19 outbreak, including specific advice for healthcare organisations. It covers homeworking, workplace testing, and data protection obligations for mutual aid and community groups.

Contingency planning

Working from home: tech considerations

Kirstin Gillon 17-03-2020

The coronavirus crisis is forcing many people to work from home to reduce social contact and minimise the associated risk of transmitting the disease.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) advice for UK employers

CIPD 05-03-2020

Factsheet from CIPD which is focused on how businesses can respond to the threat posed by global health emergencies such as COVID-19 and support their workforce, including the development of flexible resourcing plans.

Coronavirus: advice for employers and employees

Acas 19-02-2020

Basic advice for UK employers and workers in the event of a wider UK outbreak. It provides guidance on sick pay and recommends what employers should do if employees do not want to go to work, if someone becomes unwell at work, if someone with coronavirus comes to work, and if employers needs to close the workplace.


Providing apprenticeships during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak

GOV.UK 02-06-2020

Guidance from the Department for Education and Education and Skills Funding Agency for apprentices, employers, training providers and assessment organisations in response to the impact of COVID-19. It covers apprenticeship training and assessment, delivering apprenticeships flexibly to those working at home, furloughed employees continuing apprenticeship training, breaks in learning, end-point assessment (EPA), and funding audits and evidence.

The Skills Toolkit

National Careers Service 28-04-2020

The Skills Toolkit is a UK Government initiative focused on the digital skills employers need, offering people easy access to free, high quality online courses. The toolkit can also help employers support and develop furloughed employees.

Travel restrictions

Coronavirus outbreak: Latest updates on travel restrictions

IATA 05-03-2020

Frequently updated, comprehensive page listing travel restrictions by country or territory for passengers and airline crew. There may be restrictions on entry, changes to visa exemptions, and requirements for testing or quarantine.

ICAEW accepts no responsibility for the content on any site to which a hypertext link from this site exists. The links are provided ‘as is’ with no warranty, express or implied, for the information provided within them. Please see the full copyright and disclaimer notice.

* Some of the content on this web page was provided by the Chartered Accountants’ Trust for Education and Research, a registered charity, which owns the library and operates it for ICAEW.