Staffing your Cannabis Business During COVID-19: Part 1

Shit is crazy right now. We’re facing labor challenges at a national level and specifically within the cannabis industry. Here’s what we’ve seen:

  1. A large reduction of internal staff and organizations going down to skeletal crews.
  2. A reduction in salaries, budgets and employee furloughs.
  3. All time Oregon Retail Sales numbers in March, April & May.
  4. An increase in production needs, reduced crew size and output.
  5. A sense of uncertainty. Companies are asking, “How do I get people to work?” and “How many people will show up?”

We have also seen gratitude. Gratitude to be an industry considered essential during this pandemic. Here at GreenForce Staffing, we have created some best practices that we have been utilizing with our partners while navigating these unprecedented times.

We offer flexibility across all channels.

If production timelines are being shifted, we’re able to get creative when providing essential labor in a safe setting. We have curated daily and weekly labor support, as well as project specific crews, that can ebb and flow with the uncertainty of workflow demands. We’ve offered our employees, split shifts, swing shifts, and have also been offering four 10 hours shifts/week or 3 10 hours shifts/week. With our accordion labor model, we’ve made it easy to bring hands on deck when our clients need it most.

Safety is our biggest priority.

We ensure our crews are using caution when working at our client’s facilities. We have daily huddles and check in with our crew to ensure they’re in adequate working conditions. While spacing and expanding production areas may be tricky, we’re continuously collaborating with our clients to make sure our crews are working safely and 6 feet apart from one another. Our employees are provided the training and tools to maintain a safe and efficient workplace.We work on maintaining consistent work crews in order to create a smaller quarantine exposure bubble, which helps prevent the spread of infectious diseases.



Sanitation and health are a major priority during working hours.

From leaving doors open to a constant cleaning of common spaces, workstations and bathrooms, we are doing our best to keep spaces clean and sanitized. Ditching doorknobs all together is a lean manufacturing approach to reducing exposure. Indow, a Portland company that makes energy-efficient window inserts. Taking an employee’s temperature is normally not allowed, but during times like these it is. This is per the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, “Generally, measuring an employee’s body temperature is a medical examination. If pandemic influenza symptoms become more severe than the seasonal flu or the H1N1 virus in the spring/summer of 2009, or if pandemic influenza becomes widespread in the community as assessed by state or local health authorities or the CDC, then employers may measure employees’ body temperature. However, employers should be aware that some people with influenza, including the 2009 H1N1 virus or COVID-19, do not have a fever. Because the CDC and state/local health authorities have acknowledged community spread of COVID-19 and issued attendant precautions as of March 2020, employers may measure employees’ body temperature. As with all medical information, the fact that an employee had a fever or other symptoms would be subject to ADA confidentiality requirements.”

We are doing this to ensure the health and safety of all workers at our job sites and will continue asking our employees to stay home when sick. 


A little bit about GreenForce

We are an Oregon based workforce and labor solutions agency.  That is a fancy way of saying we are a staffing agency. We partner with a number of producers, processors, wholesalers & retailers in Oregon and provide them with labor solutions such as harvest support, trimming, packaging, edible and pre-roll production, to recruiting for Director of Sales, CPAs and budtenders. 

Learn more about working with GreenForce Staffing or View our current job openings.