The COVID-19 pandemic has transformed all aspects of the economy, including the world of work. As many companies continue to implement remote working, others aren’t so lucky. Whether it’s because a company and its employees aren’t practically prepared to handle a work-from-home setup or certain jobs can’t be done without being on-site, keeping your office clean, safe, and secure is as important as getting work done efficiently.
Create a clean and safe work environment for your and your employees with these helpful tips.
Check for Health Hazards
Before you allow your employees to come back to the office, make sure that your office space is safe for everyone to work. At the beginning of the pandemic, no one expected that many office spaces would stay out of commission for so long, which makes it possible for different health hazards to surface. Several hazards often come with longer periods of facility shutdowns that could put not only put you and your employees at risk but can also damage your space. These hazards include pests, stagnant water, and mold, which are commonly found in unused facilities.
Many pests can find a home in an unused office space for various reasons — wet mops that weren’t wrung, cardboard boxes, leftover food in the pantry, and even broken faucets, among other things. Faulty plumbing can also cause stagnant water that results to lead, copper, and bacteria build-up, which in some cases can cause Legionnaire’s disease. Ensure everything is in tip-top shape by getting in touch with plumbers for commercial spaces, your HVAC maintenance man, and professional cleaners.
An important part of ensuring everyone is safe and secure once they go back to the office is clear communication. You can do this via email, text message, or other messaging apps. Be transparent about any guidelines that need following or processes that need undergoing like wearing a mask before entering the office or submitting oneself to a daily temperature check.
Ensuring you set clear and concise guidelines that everyone can understand will help your employees protect themselves and others from contracting or spreading the virus. It’s also important that you inform all your staff in advance to avoid any arguments or confusion.
Follow Standard Health and Safety Protocols
Wearing the proper face masks, regularly washing hands, and practicing social distancing are crucial guidelines to follow, especially during a time like this when the virus and its strains are as contagious as they are. If you have the budget, consider adding a bottle of hand sanitizer or alcohol and an extra face mask to each of your employee’s workspaces. Place an alcohol and tissue dispenser in the bathrooms to make sure everyone is sanitizing their hands regularly.
However, while sanitizing your hands with alcohol or sanitizer is a good temporary solution for washing hands, encourage regular handwashing with soap and water. To properly implement these health and safety guidelines in the workplace, you can use visual aids like signage that remind everyone to wear their masks at all times and regularly wash their hands.
Regarding social distancing, there are a couple of ways you can go about doing this: you can either create a cubicle-set up where everyone is seated at least 1 meter away from each other. If your office can’t hold all your employees in a socially distanced manner, consider implementing a skeletal workforce where half of your employees report to the office while the other half work from home. They can do this in rotational shifts where everyone has the opportunity to work from home and physically report to the office every one or two weeks.
Disinfect Workplace Regularly
Disinfecting the workplace can be a joint effort between your team and professional cleaners. On the weekdays, encourage employees to sanitize their work areas before clocking out to prepare them for the next workday. On the weekends, you can choose to hire professional cleaners to ensure a deeper clean that helps protect everyone in the office. While hiring professional cleaners can be pricey, especially when you have them clean regularly, you can ensure that they can properly clean, sanitize, and disinfect your office to keep your workplace safe and secure.
With the COVID-19 pandemic showing no signs of disappearing in the near future, it’s up to employers and employees alike to take the necessary precautions to protect themselves and others from spreading and contracting the virus. This way, business operations can continue without worrying about how workers are faring. Growth and success can still be experienced despite the trying times.