When you open a hive, often you will find a good number of bees on the underside of the inner cover. You can prop the inner cover next to the hive or put it in the grass, but the bees on the cover may end up crawling through the grass and, if you don’t have your pant legs anchored down, up your leg.
NC State Apiary Inspector Supervisor Don Hopkins suggested propping the inner cover in front of the hive so the bees can just walk up the inner cover and go back into the hive. You want to make sure you are not blocking the entrance with the inner cover and you want to make sure the bees can easily get from the cover to the front porch of the hive.
Here’s a little video showing the bees walking up the inner cover and going into the hive. This is just a short video, but after about 5 minutes, there are hardly any bees left on the inner cover.