After this pandemic eases (and it will), you need to consider how you are going to utilise your office space once again. The world has changed in recent months, with people all over the globe working from home. This has seen an emergence in flexible working, unlike anything we have ever seen before. Many companies are even considering whether they need their offices at all. Most businesses are thinking about how they can return to the office in a more effective way. Homeworking has shown how staff can be productive when sitting at their dining room table sipping their favourite coffee, so why do we need an office? Face to face interaction is something we have sorely missed. We rely on email tones rather than facial hints. The office, while maybe not the same as it once was, is still a crucial part of your company in a post-pandemic world. How will you get your office fit for work?
The most vital aspect of working as the coronavirus lockdown eases is ensuring our workplaces remain clean. Every evening after everyone has gone home, you need to give your office a clean to remove all traces of any potential virus. Couple with this a more Covid-19 secure deep clean every week to ensure all surfaces and common areas have been decontaminated. This will be the new routine for many bosses across the country. This is a cost you need to factor into the upkeep of your workspaces. To maintain cleanliness, all non-essential items should also be removed, such as greenery and water coolers.
The concept of social distancing only became relevant a few months ago. Before this, we wouldn’t dream of beginning a meeting without a handshake. Now we namaste or elbow bump. Social distancing is crucial in preventing the spread of coronavirus, and you need to uphold this within the workplace. You may need lines drawn on the floor to remind people of the two metre distance they should be keeping from everyone else. Hot desking can no longer be common practice, and you should refrain from encouraging the sharing of mugs at the coffee machine. Simple practises will go a long way in stopping the spread of the disease.
Staff Well Being
Many people have found lockdown a challenge. This has affected the mental health of many individuals. However, when your staff return to work, you want them to see the office a safe space. To do this, you must maintain high levels of communication and take their views on board. If masks make them feel safer, get some. If they want hand sanitiser at their desk, order it. And, if they need some time out every so often, allow this. Be flexible. You don’t want a workforce that is scared to come into the office. Morale will be sapped, and confidence will be low.
Help your staff to return to work in stages. Allow working from home, and consider an office presence rota to maintain social distancing. Your business will function and thrive once again.