While many organizations have moved to remote work over the last few months due to the COVID-19 outbreak, some businesses require having their employees back in the office, while some others have shifted to a part work-from-home and part in-the-office schedule.
As your business reintegrates team members into the workplace, ensuring that your business has the proper set of cleaning procedures in place is very important. Here are 4 effective ways to help keep your organization safe during and after the coronavirus pandemic.
1. Implement Social Distancing Measures in the Office
Maintaining social distancing measures, especially when in an indoor and shared workspace like an office, is critical.
There are multiple steps you can take to make sure that social distancing measures are implemented properly:
- Limit the number of employees and visitors who enter the office. Using flexible hours and staggering shifts is a great way to control how many people are circulating in the office on a given day. You may even find that this strategy improves efficiency among and within your teams.
- Update your office design and layout to maintain a six-foot (or two-meter) distance between your team members. Separating desks and workstations, rearranging seating arrangements and reducing the number of employees working in each room will help keep distance among people in the workplace.
- Install partitions between desks and map out a floor plan with markers for smaller spaces in the office such as one-way hallways and staircases.
- Even when in the office, maintain virtual meetings to limit the number of employees gathering in a shared space. There are many benefits to doing this. First, you may find that you can include more or less people than you would have included had the meeting been in-person. Second, you will notice that Zoom or Microsoft Teams doesn’t demonstrate hierarchy in virtual rooms that would otherwise occur around a boardroom table. Third, time isn’t wasted having people travel into a physical meeting room.
2. Maintain a Hygienic and Frequently Cleaned Work Environment
Ensuring that your business is taking the proper steps to maintain a high standard of cleanliness and hygiene is necessary to prevent the spread of germs and viruses in the workplace.
Increase the availability of disinfectant wipes and antiseptic hand-sanitizing products around the office, and make sure that your employees are frequently disinfecting surfaces that they use on a daily basis such as their desks, doorknobs to their office and more. Additionally, reminding your employees to wash and sanitize their hands and to not touch their faces on a regular basis is also very important to ensure that hygiene is being maintained throughout the office. Repeating and emphasizing these policies on a weekly basis during meetings and in company-wide emails will show your team that this is a priority and that you’re taking their health seriously.
While getting your employees to disinfect commonly touched surfaces and their personal spaces on a daily basis is very important, bringing in professional cleaners to perform routine workplace cleaning will ensure that employees have a peace of mind knowing that their work environment is safe.
3. Ventilation and Air Circulation in the Workplace
Having proper air circulation in the office is important to mitigate the spread of airborne germs and bacteria in the workplace.
By reducing air recirculation and opening windows throughout the office when possible to increase the intake of fresh air from outdoors, you are ensuring cleaner and more well-circulated air, which will help reduce the chance of employees spreading germs to each other.
Having regular air filtration system and filter checks is also important to ensure that the air being recirculated in the office is cleaner and safer for employees, customers and guests to breathe.
4. Keep Open Communication and Increase Signage Visibility
Having an open communication with your employees and reminding them of the precautions they need to take to stay safe and healthy are not only important to show them that you care and make them feel heard, but also helps maintain proper hygiene and cleanliness throughout your business.
Putting signage around the workplace to keep employees mindful of safety procedures is an effective and visual way to help employees prevent the spread of germs and viruses in the office. Also, changing the look and feel of signage on a monthly basis is a smart way to grab the attention of team members who are seeing the same messages day-in and day-out.
During these challenging and unprecedented times, organizations are taking extra precautions to ensure the health and safety for their employees and companies. Following these measures for safety and cleanliness can give you the confidence you need to help your employees and business navigate the challenges of the COVID-19 public health outbreak.