COVID-19 Resources

COVID-19 RESOURCES

HERE TO HELP

As we all are navigating the COVID-19 virus distributors have a considerable challenge in managing the business impacts resulting from the global health crisis. We’ve compiled many resources with up-to-date coverage on regulatory updates, market insights, employer resources, member insights, and other information that you can utilize to help support your organization through this unprecedented situation.

    

Follow our social accounts for the most recent information and resources.

Congress Approves Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act

Yesterday evening the Senate passed the Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act which will provide changes to the PPP loan program to make it easier for businesses to use the funds to maintain employment and cover necessary non-payroll costs. With the extension from 8 to 24 weeks, all businesses should be able to use their full loan amounts if they were unable to before.

Introducing Green Shoots

Our economy was thrust into an economic coma to slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus.  It worked, but more than 20 million people lost their jobs in the process.  Putting a patient into a coma is risky and reserved for dire circumstances. Will they wake, and how long will it be until they can walk normally?

PPP Loan Forgiveness: How to Apply and What Changes Might Be Coming

6/4/20 With Talbot Gee & Alex Ayers

The Small Business Administration has released the Payroll Protection Program forgiveness application detailing what expenses businesses can apply for forgiveness. We go through the application, instructions, and any guidance released by SBA and fill you in on the bipartisan Paycheck Protection Flexibility Act that would make changes supported by the business community.

The Next Six Months: Scenario Planning for a Pandemic Economy

6/2/20 With Tim Fisher, PHCC, ACCA, AHRI, NAFA & PMI

As stay-at-home orders are being lifted and the typically busy summer season upon us, what might the future hold for the industry? Learn the various economic scenarios in play for the rest of the year and to find out how you can prepare your business for what’s ahead.

Member Insights: Pulse Survey Recap

5/29/20 By Sarah Jilbert & Tim Fisher

HARDI’s Account Manager, Sarah Jilbert, and Team Leader of Market Intelligence, Tim Fisher, recap the last 7 week’s of HARDI’s Weekly Pulse Survey, and tell you what to look forward to in the coming weeks.

Voice of Contractor Episode 9: The Data Driven Impact of COVID-19

5/28/20 With Talbot Gee & Vahe Kuzoyan

In our longest, yet most robust episode yet, Talbot sits down with Vahe Kuzoyan, CoFounder of ServiceTitan, to discuss the data and trends of their contractor customers performance throughout COVID-19. Be sure to share their Contractor Playbook with your customers.

Episode 1 | Episode 2 | Episode 3 | Episode 4 | Episode 5 | Episode 6 | Episode 7 | Episode 8

Paycheck Protection Program and Economic Injury Disaster Loans

The Small Business Administration is offering loans to businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. Businesses can apply for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) through local lenders and the Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) at on the SBA website.

Learn More

Families First Coronavirus Response Act

The FFCRA, passed on March 18, 2020 contained 2 major Acts with requirements for employers of fewer than 500 employees:

  • The Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act (E-PSL)
  • The Emergency Paid Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act (E-FMLA)

Learn More

FAQ’s on the PPP loans

Our FAQs from our ‘Cutting Through the Clutter Surrounding PPP Loans and Their Forgiveness’ Webinar are now available! Check them out here to learn more about PPP Loans and forgiveness guidelines.

DOL Limits Unemployment for Workers not Returning from Furlough

5/1/20 With Alex Ayers

This week the Department of Labor released a new set of frequently asked questions that helped ease concerns for many business owners with furloughed workers. Read on for the outlined FAQ’s…

Improved HVAC Expensing Provision

3/31/20 With Alex Ayers

The CARES Act legislation fixed a technical error from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Hear more about the change from Alex Ayers. You can also reference our infographic.

HARDI Mexico: COVID-19 Update

6/1/20 With Guitze Messina

Guitze Messina, HARDI Mexico’s Executive Director, gives us an update on his work in Mexico. With 57% of American A/C imports coming from Mexico, it is important to stay up to date on any news coming from Mexican plants.

Contractor Business Resources

5/19/20 By Tim Fisher

In continuation of trying to help our members, HARDI has made resources available to contractor businesses to help ensure their success and fortify demand for HVACR products.

Stress-Testing Your Business: A Free Tool to Help Forecast Cash-Flows

5/1/20 By Tim Fisher

Our friends at the Indian River Consulting Group (IRCG) recently created this simple, free stress-test tool to help distributors model the cash-flow implications of an economic downturn.

Facial Mask Protection for HARDI Distributors’ Customers

We have partnered with DiversiTech to help you provide facial mask protection for your most at-risk customers (service technicians) and your most exposed personnel through an Emergency Safety Supplies Program (ESSP).

Hazard Pay: To Pay or Not to Pay, that is the Question

4/30/20 By Syretta Williams

As HARDI continues to touch base with its members while supporting them through dealing with COVID-19, questions were raised regarding the topic of paying employees hazard pay. Read on for Pam Krivda’s advice on the subject.

Updated OSHA Requirements for Employees with COVID-19

4/22/20 By Alex Ayers

When COVID-19 cases started developing in the United States, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, OSHA, advised that a confirmed case of COVID-19 was recordable if the case was determined to be work-related. Check out the updated requirements.

Member Spotlight: John White

6/4/20 With Emily Frost & John White

This month we interview John White, President of American Refrigeration Supply (ARS), for our June Member Spotlight. We highlight John for his dedication and passion for recruiting top talent into the HVACR industry. Learn more about his talent recruitment methods, his work with local schools, and how COVID-19 has affected recruitment efforts.

Member Insights: Pulse Survey Recap

5/29/20 By Sarah Jilbert & Tim Fisher

HARDI’s Account Manager, Sarah Jilbert, and Team Leader of Market Intelligence, Tim Fisher, recap the last 7 week’s of HARDI’s Weekly Pulse Survey, and tell you what to look forward to in the coming weeks.

Voice of Contractor Episode 9: The Data Driven Impact of COVID-19

5/28/20 With Talbot Gee & Vahe Kuzoyan

In our longest, yet most robust episode yet, Talbot sits down with Vahe Kuzoyan, CoFounder of ServiceTitan, to discuss the data and trends of their contractor customers performance throughout COVID-19. 

Be sure to share their Contractor Playbook with your customers.

Episode 1 | Episode 2 | Episode 3 | Episode 4 | Episode 5 | Episode 6 | Episode 7 | Episode 8

For more information visit our blog and our HARDI Hub

FAQ’s

What constitutes an “essential vs. non-essential” business?

We know from already released guidance from various shelter-in-place orders that governments are supporting HVACR as essential. The HVACR industry cosigned this letter calling for technicians and engineers (and by association wholesalers that supply them) to be essential. See our blog post for further details from Director of Government Affairs, Alex Ayers. We will continue to update the blog post as we get more information.

If your area is developing plans to implement shelter-in-place orders, please share with them the CISA memo and our industry letter to ensure your business is considered essential.

You may also provide a ‘Critical Industry Employee Authorization to Travel’ letter (template) to your employees.

Keep track of state-by-state policies with this policy tracker.

What is the employer's obligation to provide hazard pay?

There is no obligation unless mandated by a collective bargaining agreement (i.e. Unions). Congress could make a change later to this obligation, in which case this response would be updated. If employees are asking and employers want to give hazard pay they can, however, it’s an organization’s decision and there is no reimbursement recourse for the organizations to seek.

What can be done to protect my Counter Specialist Employees from exposure yet still allow me to run my business?
Check out this video with insights from HR Consultant Pam Krivda. Pam suggests creating distance between the employees and customers, have a sign welcoming customers and asking them to limit physical contact (no handshaking), consider self-serve Will Call with a limited number of employees managing the area, and delivery. Other best practices include having the customer swipe their own credit card, have hand sanitizing gel available on the counter, and take away any chairs around the counter area to limit time at the branch location.
What do I do if one of my branch employees tests positive?
Check out this video with insights from HR Consultant Pam Krivda. Scroll to the 1:09 mark. Pam suggests sending the employee home, sealing off areas they came into contact with, and having someone fully protected clean the area with approved cleaning supplies.

  • Please work with your state and local governments as their may be closure mandates and other guidelines your company must follow in the event of a positive case of COVID-19.
  • CDC has released guidelines on how to clean a facility that has had a confirmed case of COVID-19 in it and recommends all employees that came in contact with the infected employee to self-quarantine for 14 days. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/organizations/cleaning-disinfection.html
  • Remember employers need to follow confidentiality laws relating to health issues, so if someone does become sick it cannot be announced who it is without getting the employees permission. 
What are best practices of other distributors? What are other distributors doing?

Our Account Manager for Wholesalers, Sarah Jilbert, has put together the best practices she has heard from members. Find it here. She has also created a video resource recapping what she has heard from members as they re-open branches.

See how you compare to your peers in our Weekly Pulse Survey.
Week 1 Results
Week 2 Results
Week 3 Results

How long should employees remain home/quarantined if they are showing one or more symptoms of COVID-19?

If the employee is NOT tested to determine contagion, s/he can leave quarantine after these 3 things have happened: (1) Employee has had no fever for at least 72 hours (3 full days of no fever without the use of medicine that reduces fevers) AND (2) other symptoms have improved (e.g., cough or shortness of breath has improved; AND (3) at least 7 days have passed since their symptoms first appeared.

If the employee is tested to determine contagion, s/he can leave home after these 3 things have happened: (1) S/he no longer has a fever 3 full days of no fever without the use of medicine that reduces fevers); AND (2) other symptoms have improved; AND (3) employee received two negative tests in a row, 24-hours apart.

For more information, refer to the CDC guidelines here.

Our Account Manager for Wholesalers, Sarah Jilbert, has also put together the best practices she has heard from members. Find it here.

See how you compare to your peers in our Weekly Pulse Survey. See week 1 results here.

My employee is sick but not currently diagnosed with COVID-19. Do they qualify for E-FMLA or E-PSL based on a “substantially similar condition”?

E-FMLA does not apply to an employee’s own condition – only to the need to take leave because an employee’s child’s school/day care is closed (or care provider unavailable) due to COVID-191. E-FMLA does not apply to an employee’s own condition – only to the need to take leave because an employee’s child’s school/day care is closed (or care provider unavailable) due to COVID-192.

“Condition Substantially Similar”:  Thus far, the Department of Labor has not identified any “condition(s) substantially similar”. In DOL’s Guidance of 4/4/20, it indicated that no such conditions have yet been identified by U.S. Department HHS that would allow an employee to take the 80 hours’ E-Paid Sick Leave.  DOL said that if HHS does identify any such condition, DOL will issue guidance. As of April 28, 2020, no such guidance has been issued.

So, it appears as it the employee cannot avail themself of either the E-FMLA leave or the E-PSL leave.  The employer can pay them for time off for pneumonia if they want, but the payments won’t be eligible for tax credits.

What if I have Critical Employees that Need Authorization to Travel Under a Stay-at-Home Order?
We have a resource that can be filled out and completed for your essential workers to carry with them as the travel for work. Click here for our essential employee travel template.

Have questions about COVID-19 you would like us to research? Ask us here.

Industry Events Updates

JUNE

  • HARDI Focus Conference | June 3-5, 2020 | Canceled/Considering Virtual Event
    New 2021 In-person Dates | June 23-25, 2021
  • HARDI Southwest Regional Meeting | June 14-16, 2020 | Canceled
    Rescheduled for June 20-21, 2021
  • ASHRAE Annual Conference | June 27-July 1 | Virtual Only 

JULY