It may seem intimidating making the move to return to work or school after a period of remote work, especially when you’re concerned for the safety of your employees. Keeping everyone healthy while still maintaining productivity is a daunting task, but there are some simple ways to keep your building a safe, germ-free space for the people inside. By following these tips, you’ll ensure that your employees will feel confident and prepared to tackle whatever change is ahead.
1. Disinfect All Surfaces
It is essential to finish this task before asking anyone to come back to the office. By hiring a service to clean the building, you’ll remove a lot of the pressure on yourself or your regular custodian to make the building safe. Hiring electrostatic disinfection services is an excellent way to guarantee a safe disinfection for all surfaces in your office building.
After the initial disinfection, it’s important to regularly have all frequently touched surfaces wiped down with a disinfecting product. Computer keyboards, doorknobs, and kitchen equipment are all hot spots and should be cleaned as often as possible. Try to identify any other objects or surfaces in the building that should be cleaned regularly and put someone in charge of wiping them down.
2. Make Resources Available
The best way to ensure that safety protocols are followed is by providing the necessary resources. Face masks, hand sanitizer, and cleaning wipes are all good things to have on hand for your employees at all time, and make sure there are hand washing stations readily available. Have shields and screens placed throughout the office, particularly in locations where face-to-face interactions are unavoidable.
In addition, make sure that any new safety policies regarding the prevention of spreading germs are clear and visible for all employees. Confusion regarding new guidelines could cause a lot of issues and prevent your transition back to the workplace from being smooth and stress free. If social distance is expected, place markers on the floor in high traffic areas to enforce it, and place signs on bathroom doors to keep the occupancy low. Ensure that your employees feel comfortable calling in sick if they’re under the weather, and encourage regular health checks before entering the office in the morning.
3. Improve Ventilation
One of the most important aspects of indoor work in 2020 is your office’s air quality. Buildings intended for office work tend to be stuffy and rely on central heating or air conditioning to provide atmospheric comfort, but won’t help your employees avoid infecting one another.
Investing in better ventilation systems is one of the best ways to quickly make your office a safer place, and making sure they’re kept clean will maintain their effectiveness. Keeping any windows and doors open and fans running will help to circulate fresh air and prevent the spread of droplets.
4. Implement a Shift System
If social distancing is impossible to enforce with your office at max capacity, it may be wise to implement a rotating shift system. Instead of the regular nine to five hours, you can stagger their hours to have half of the employees at the beginning of the day and another half at the end, for instance. Some offices have opted for a three day on, two day off system. This is the easiest way to ensure that your employees can maintain physical space between one another, especially if screens or other barriers are not possible throughout the office.
It is an enormous responsibility to be aware of and implement the many protections that exist against viruses. Keeping your employees safe and running your business smoothly may seem like mutually exclusive goals, but they don’t have to be. There may be initial confusion when things change, but you’ll soon develop new habits and patterns that will make the transition a breeze. By working now to safeguard your office building, you’ll buy yourself ease of mind in the long run and your employees will be thankful you did.