For many, this is an extremely daunting task to be faced with; reimagining how one’s business should evolve to meet the new normal set by the Coronavirus pandemic. How exactly, can one’s business push forward and arrive at a completely altered working landscape? Will life ever be “normal” again?
For the past six months, normal has become Work From Home. Stay safe, stay home, flatten the curve. But after practicing social distancing and enduring home isolation for the better half of the year, many are beginning to question whether transitioning their team back into an office environment could be possible, and if so, how to keep everyone safe and risk-free during the typical 9-5 workday. To do this, there will have to be many structural and administrative changes to your once well-functioning office environment. This process may not be a cake-walk, and you’ll have to meet this challenge with an open mind, and enough resources to be successful in this transition. Here are the top four ways in which you can adjust to changing times and prepare your business to emerge from the current crisis unscathed.
- Spatial Separation
To achieve enhanced health and safety for you and your employees transitioning back into the office, it is going to take some physical reimagining. You’ll need to alter/change the overall layout and respective environment to accommodate the necessity for physical distancing. Remember that many employees are still quite nervous and apprehensive about returning to work and putting themselves in a potentially dangerous situation. With so many people disregarding government recommendations, it can be understandably hard to know if your peers and coworkers are doing the right thing by wearing a mask/socially distancing outside of the office. As a business owner, the responsibility is on you to ensure your employees are safe when they come into work. Consider ordering modern glass partitions, glass office walls, and easy to disinfect glass office dividers. These spatial solutions offer enhanced barrier and boundary for anyone in the office and will help keep your employees safer and more distanced than normal. They serve a high purpose, allow natural light to flow through the entire office and keep a sense of continuity between employees, raising morale and maintaining a team environment even during the most isolating of times.
2. Enhanced Safety Measures
The next best thing you can do to ensure your office is as safe and as risk-free as possible is to continuously clean, disinfect and manage the health of your working environment. Consider hiring a full-time cleaner or if your company is large enough, a cleaning service that is present the entire workday. They will scrub down surfaces, disinfect and wipe down areas that get high use and traffic such as door handles, bathrooms, communal kitchens, and lounge areas. This way, your employees can feel comfortable existing outside of their little cubicle when necessary. Additionally, require each and every one of your employees to wear a face covering, to refrain from coming into the office if they feel slightly ill, warm, have a runny nose or a cough. Some companies and establishments are even requiring compliance of a routine daily temperature check before entering the building (this applies to both employees and clients alike). Additionally, think about the ways you can evolve your communal spaces, such as kitchens and lounges/co-working stations to become more spaced-out and safer. Move couches and chairs apart to maintain six feet of separation, offer reduced food and beverage options in the communal kitchen area, and ask employees to bring in their own personal utensils and cups.
3. Reduce maximum capacity
An effective tactic in crafting a safe workspace is to stagger workers’ schedules in order to reduce your daily capacity. Organize your employee’s schedules so that some work from home half of the week, while others come into the office, then switch through the week and have the WFH group come into the office and send the others home. While this may be confusing at first, people will fall into this new normal and may even enjoy mixing it up during the week.
Transition your workplace into a safe, welcoming work environment by integrating new techniques, safety measures, and spatial barriers for everyone to benefit from. Install glass office walls, sliding room dividers, and glass sliding doors to allow for increased separation while still maintaining a community feel. A “separate but together” floor plan will become a crucial element throughout this reintegration process to safeguard everyone in the office moving forward. Visit Space Plus, A Division of the Sliding Door Company online for more spatial inspiration, to view our online catalog, and to Get a quote from one of our professionals today.
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