Ever since the COVID-19 vaccines became available, organisations globally have been trying to create policies, processes and develop vaccination management solutions to facilitate employee vaccination tracking.
Unlike other pandemics the world has experienced, COVID-19 requires people to be fully vaccinated to lessen or eliminate the symptoms experienced. While the vaccine has brought about differing concerns and views, employees and employers need it to return to their offices.
Making sure employees are vaccinated, or even tracking their vaccination status, will provide much-needed protection against virus transmission. Organisations, no matter the industry, are working to manage employee vaccination tracking and comply with ever-changing requirements.
COVID-19 vaccine rollout in Australia is underway, and COVID-19 vaccination is mandatory for aged care and healthcare workers . As such, it is all the more crucial for them to plan, track and report vaccine status on their workforce.
How does employee vaccination tracking come into play?
What is employee vaccination tracking?
Employee vaccination tracking – a relatively new concept, is used to monitor and keep track of employee vaccination status.
As the COVID-19 vaccine becomes more readily available, governments and industries are making it mandatory for their employees to be fully vaccinated in order to continue on-site employment. However, these organisations face the challenge of keeping track of their employee vaccination status.
Employee vaccination tracking is especially important in today’s context. It is vital for Australian healthcare organisations as they need to quickly find a way to securely track their staff and contractors’ vaccination status. Not only do they need to track employee’s vaccination status, but they also need to retrieve and submit required data.
Importance of employee vaccination tracking
Depending on the state and industry regulations, employee vaccination tracking is vital for organisations to remain compliant. Further, for organisations to make informed decisions on the future reopening of workplaces, leaders need a clear picture of the vaccination landscape.
For instance, for the healthcare industry in Australia, workers have to be vaccinated or at least have one dose by a specific timeline. It is thus crucial for healthcare organisations to ensure their employees are vaccinated or at least have appointments for vaccination.
Further, they will have to find a way to collect and store the vaccination proof when the government or state conducts an audit.
The need to remain compliant
The need to remain compliant is one of the reasons why employee vaccination tracking is so important. Especially for aged care and healthcare organisations, a breach in compliance with state regulations can lead to a $100k fine.
Not only do they have to collect and store employee vaccination, but they also have to make sure the collected vaccination evidence is accurate. Additionally, while government regulations for some countries are consistent throughout, it is unfortunately not the case for Australia.
For example, for Western Australia, it was announced staff and contractors must have one dose as of 1 October to enter tier 1 facilities. Subsequently, all health workers in WA will have to be fully vaccinated by 1 January 2022.
However, it is different for New South Wales (NSW). Health workers in NSW must have at least one dose by 30 September and two doses by 30 November. To further establish the different regulations between states in Australia, some states like ACT have yet to announce any state directives.
With so many different complexities to COVID-19 vaccination regulations, organisations must ensure they have an employee vaccination tracking system in place. This is so they can abide and comply with their state regulations and avoid any unnecessary fines.
Ensuring the safety of workers in the workplace
Another reason why employee vaccination tracking is needed is to ensure the safety of workers in the workplace. By making sure employees’ vaccination status is accounted for, employers can create a safer working environment.
When employers are aware of the employee vaccination landscape, they can better plan for the utilisation of the workplace. For instance, employers can plan for work events or workplace seating based on employee vaccination status. In addition, employers can delegate vaccinated employees to a particular workspace and non-vaccinated employees to another.
This can thus help keep the workforce safe and healthy by preventing employees of different vaccination statuses from mingling. Ultimately, it can reduce and prevent the spread of potential viruses in the workplace.
Additionally, when employers have an employee vaccination tracking system, it gives employees the confidence to return to work. Employees will feel safe when employers take this issue seriously.
Methods of employee vaccination tracking
Now we understand the importance of employee vaccination tracking, below are some key steps and methods you can take to carry out vaccination tracking:
- Before you implement any form of vaccination tracking, please consult with your legal team on data privacy. The last thing you want is for employees’ health details to be leaked!
- Make sure you inform all stakeholders involved in vaccination tracking. Communicate with your employees on the reason for vaccination tracking and be open to employee concerns.
- Work together with your IT department to ensure your IT infrastructure can support such data collection.
Once you have checked the above boxes, you can start to explore the various methods of employee vaccination tracking.
Vaccination management solution
One of the most efficient ways to track your employee vaccination status is via a vaccination management solution. A vaccination management solution can help your organisation automate the collection and verification process.
Zipline’s vaccination management solution can help you optimise and streamline the entire vaccination collection and verification process. Further, it makes it easy for employees to upload their vaccination evidence.
When evidence is uploaded, the vaccination management solution will automatically store and verify the uploaded evidence. It will alert and inform employers and employees when the evidence is deemed as invalid. Employees can then re-upload their evidence.
This employee vaccination tracking method also helps organisations comply with ever-changing government regulations. It does so by automating the entire compliance process. In addition, organisations will not have to worry about data security as the data collected via the system will be stored securely.
Through this system, employers can identify workers who have received their first dose, as well as those who are fully vaccinated. This helps facilitate organisations’ staff scheduling and rostering.
Another employee vaccination tracking method organisations can adopt is the good ole spreadsheet. A cheaper alternative to the vaccination management software, organisations can adopt this method if they have a team dedicated to collecting and recording vaccination evidence.
Unlike the vaccination management software that automates the entire collection and verification process, this method is more manual. It relies on admin staff or receptionists to ensure employees upload their vaccination records.
Further, it is a manual process of trying to keep up with state regulations. The team will have to constantly keep a lookout on the news for any regulation changes. This particular method of employee vaccination tracking will be more suitable for small organisations with fewer employees to keep track of.
With the post-COVID-19 world being an uncertain one, it is essential for organisations to remain flexible and adapt to changes as they come and go. With the government and states implementing mandatory COVID-19 vaccination for healthcare workers, it is important organisations adapt quickly.
One such way is to implement employee vaccination tracking in the workplace. Organisations should implement any method that suits the needs and size of their workforce.
Zipline’s effortless vaccination management is the one you need. With a dedicated compliance team and diverse functions on our vaccine management software, let us help you stay compliant with ever-changing state regulations.