Your staff are one of your most valuable assets and their safety must be paramount upon their return to work. If you have already implemented a new schedule back in the office and your team are slowly returning, then it is vital to ensure that they are safe at work and that they have the appropriate protection in place so that it is a safe place to be. It isn’t easy to adapt an entire office to keep staff away from each other. Often desks are close together but the first step is making sure that the office isn’t too overcrowded and that you can still allow them to have their distance.
- Stagger work times – have your staff come in at different times, half in the morning and half in the afternoon or perhaps dedicate full days to just half your team so that you do not have thirty or more people in the office.
- Move the desks -if you have the space, it is going to be important for you to move the desk so that they are 6 feet away from anyone else around them. You should not have your workers crammed together at any cost as they do have the rights to complain about the working environment. Afterall, you want to keep your staff happy and healthy.
- Don’t allow sharing – no team members should share anything, which includes pens. If they have to share files or the kettle, or telephone systems, then be sure that you encourage regular handwashing.
- Keep sanitizer everywhere – you may want to buy hand sanitizer in bulk. This way you can keep your entire office safe and allow everyone to have access to some. Whether this is at every desk, or the communal areas, entrances and any kitchen areas. This way you will find it is cheaper in the longrun to buy in bulk too, and you are protecting your staff.
- Understand their worries – mental health is a huge problem for many of us and during these times, you may find that some of your workers are dealing with anxiety and depression and it’s important to address this. You must communicate with them effectively and offer them any help you are able to. You should also speak with them to ensure that they are getting the help they need at home. In the office however, check in on them often.
- Deep clean often – have your cleaners do deep cleans much more regularly and be sure that there is a clean down at the end of every day as this will help eliminate as many of the germs that may be lingering on surfaces.
- Encourage mask wearing – if your workers don’t want to wear masks, you cannot force them but you can encourage this and of course do not allow any workers into the office who are symptomatic or live with someone who has symptoms. This can help control the spread.
- Keep the air well ventilated – keep the air circulating often and don’t let it become too stale. Open windows and use your ventilating systems.