Home Depot (HD 0.74%) has shortened its store hours and improved its paid time off (PTO) benefit for its workers as the chain continues to adapt its operations to deal with the coronavirus pandemic. The retailer has kept its doors open while many others have closed since it sells essential items people need to get through an extended period of semi-quarantine.

What is Home Depot doing?

The home improvement chain has decided to close its stores at 6 p.m. The move allows the retailer to keep its shelves stocked and its stores clean, efforts the company detailed in a press release.

As part of our normal practice, our stores and other facilities are cleaned and sanitized daily. Following guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), we've increased the frequency of cleaning and general hygiene maintenance in stores and other locations. We've also stepped up our efforts to disinfect high-traffic and high-touch areas like self-checkout, door handles, and bathrooms.

Home Depot has also made a number of changes to its PTO policies including:

  • Hourly full-time employees will get an extra 80 hours of PTO.
  • Part-time workers will get an added 40 hours.
  • Full-time hourly workers over 65 will get 160 hours of PTO.
  • Part-time hourly workers over 65 get a total of 80 hours of PTO.
  • Any worker diagnosed with COVID-19 and anyone directed to self-quarantine will be paid during that period.

"This incremental PTO can be used anytime, for any reason, between now and the end of the year," the company said.

A worker helps someone in a Home Depot.

Image source: Home Depot.

Treating workers and customers well

These changes allow workers to not come in while sick and to deal with issues like not having supervision for kids who are now home from school. Taking steps like these protects both workers and customers.