Returning To The Workplace
As more and more people receive their 2nd round of COVID vaccine shots, will we start seeing the trend of offices reopening? The return to the office will be the biggest sign of the beginning of the post COVID era. How companies decide to mitigate the challenges of more and more people returning to the same office spaces is still up for question. Do we allow everyone back? Do we stagger attendance throughout the week? Will there be safety protocols in place to keep the office happy and healthy? The challenges facing companies that decide to reopen offices are real and complicated. Hopefully, we can help!
According to survey conducted by from workplace technology firm Envoy, which questioned 1,000 full and part time workers in the US about returning to the office in order to gauge employee sentiment one year after the start of the pandemic, half of thoses asked would want to come back into the office. Whether that means a hybrid model of attendance or fulltime, most questioned where still concerned with the health and safety involved with returning to a shared work environment.
To help with some of those fears of health and safety and the growing desire to get back into a work environment with friends and colleagues, here are some tips from the CDC and other experts:
- The office you are used to might not look the same. Whether is acrylic shields between desks, more space between each work area, staggered seating in conference rooms, breakrooms and lobbies, air purification systems and sanitizing stations spread throughout the office, the offices we once knew, will not look the same.
- Desk shields are a useful tool to help keep the spread of germs between desks. We might be seeing more of these partitions in use in new office environments.
- Complete re-design of office floor plans. Space is key to help keep the spread of viruses and germs at bay. More space will be needed between desks, seating, and common areas. Limiting close contact between each other in the office will be very important in the initial reopening of offices. This might be a good time to get rid of those old cubicles!
- Conference rooms for some businesses are a vital part of the office, to keep the air fresh and circulating, it is recommended to use air purification systems, either free-standing or wall-mounted, to keep the air refreshed and germ-free. When looking for the best option, HEPA air filters are the best bet.
- Sanitation is probably the most important aspect of keeping your office germ and virus free. Stock up on plenty of hand sanitizers, wipes, and disinfectant cleaners! Wipe down any common areas after use, such as breakrooms, lobbies, conference rooms, and restrooms. Free-standing hand sanitizer stands in entrance ways and elevators are important areas to target.
- Restricting the flow of people into the office. In reception areas, many offices might want to utilize new temperature-taking technology that only allows people access to offices if their temperature is at normal levels. Also used are floor and seat decals to remind people to keep a safe distance from each other while waiting to be permitted into the office.
No matter what your office decides to incorporate, we hope to better help make that transition to a new office lifestyle easier, healthier, safer and stress free! Have a great workday.