ATLANTA – Finding an appropriate balance of employee safety and needs of the business has challenged food companies during the global pandemic. But Church’s Chicken said the company’s hybrid support center model achieves both goals.

Church’s new balanced hybrid model for the company’s Atlanta-based Restaurant Support Center teams recognizes the importance of in-person interactions, while continuing to practice social distancing guidelines, the company said. Over the past year, Church’s team members were placed on remote work schedules and split schedules depending on current COVID-19 trends and data. The hybrid model features three days in-office and two days remote for all teams. The new model will launch in 2022 and enables the company to advance work-life-balance for employees, while enhancing the workability and connectivity of the Restaurant Support Center teams, the company said.

“As many companies look to create a new normal for employees, Church’s has chartered a course that focuses on sustaining our team members and securing the continuity of our business,” said Karen Viera, chief people officer for Church’s Chicken. “The pandemic has reinforced that our organization has to remain nimble, but we’re also taking a forward-thinking approach combined with our related learnings to stay ahead of pace. We are also leaning heavily into our People First Safety Always Plan to guide us through how we’re doing business, as we seek what’s best for all our teams, franchisees, and enterprise.”

“We optimized how we work with the strategies developed in response to the pandemic. We will continue to use this methodology to ensure a win-win environment,” Viera added.