For the eighth year in a row, MSK has been honored with leadership status in the 2020 LGBTQ Healthcare Equality Index (HEI), compiled by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation.
Life During COVID-19: Benefits that Support MSK Employees at Work and Home
When the pandemic swept through New York City and the country, the Work/Life team at MSK jumped in to organize and provide critical benefits that helped employees continue to provide excellent patient care while managing their personal lives as well.
“Our first thought during the COVID pandemic, after ensuring patient and employee safety, was on the impact that the pandemic would have on employees, not only workwise but also personally,” said Christine Pfeiffer, Associate Director of Work/Life & Recognition in Human Resources. “We recognize that everyone has lots of different roles they play in their life. The team worked to identify the biggest challenges and find ways that we could help.”
Here are a few of the benefits offered to MSK employees to help them juggle their careers, families, and other passions and responsibilities.
Remote Onboarding & Work Access
Once the coronavirus hit the New York City area, MSK moved to remote work wherever possible. Employees have access to a variety of online tools including MS Teams, Yammer and Zoom to ensure everyone can connect with colleagues and work effectively from home.
While many employees continue to work from home, MSK has found unique ways to bring everyone together for networking, learning and live events.
MSK’s orientation and onboarding process has also gone virtual, so new employees can join the organization while maintaining safety for everyone involved.
Caregiver and Educational Support
One of the biggest challenges during the pandemic has been finding suitable childcare and caregiving services for children, aging parents, sick loved ones and dependents with special needs.
When the pandemic hit, MSK offered emergency benefits including crisis care reimbursement to help employees pay for emergency caregiving services. It also enhanced its emergency backup care options through Bright Horizons -- a national leader in supplying employer-sponsored backup care.
MSK employees always have access to Bright Horizons and services such as Sittercity, along with two, near-site employee-only daycare centers. MSK also hosts online forums for parents, where they can find reviews and recommendations for childcare options from other employees. Customized educational supports are available include free access to on-line tutoring.
“Every family is different and has different needs, so we try to offer a wide-variety of options so that people can find what works best for their situation and loved ones,” Pfeiffer said. “When employees are at work, we want them to feel secure that their loved ones are safe and in great hands.”
Fitness & Wellness
Working in healthcare can be fulfilling but also stressful – especially during unprecedented times like a pandemic.
Everyone at MSK has access to fitness center discounts, team-based wellness challenges and mental health services. During the pandemic, MSK added on-line fitness events, virtual meditation and yoga sessions, and nutrition webinars to ensure employees were prioritizing their health, taking care of themselves and managing stress.
MSK’s Employee Resource Networks continue to connect, providing team members a way to network, advance their careers and drive organization change, all from the comfort of their home.
“We know that the pandemic is a marathon, not a sprint, so we are continuing to find new ways to support and enhance our employees lives as we adjust to current new normal,” Pfeiffer said.