Even though working at home is an interesting experience in various industries and fields of work, many people still want to go back to the office. However, since the pandemic, the workforce as a whole has been reluctant and as a result, returning to the workplace is going to be enforced under certain conditions.
The trending hashtag on social media is the new normal is “not normal.” We need to understand that life is not going to be the same, and we all need to start following certain guidelines related to health and safety.
After all, health and employee safety were the reasons behind working from home during Covid-19 outbreaks. All employees will not go back to the office unless they are certain it will be safe for them. Social distancing in the offices and during breaks will be mandatory, and sensitization will be necessary.
Every organization will need to develop its guidelines and strategies to ensure employee safety. Transparency is a must to motivate employees to come back to the office.
There has to be an emergency plan, a plan for possible outbreaks, and a certain amount of freedom for people to make their judgment but while following certain precautionary procedures and common sense.
There are many ways that you can think of and adapt to ensure safety around the office. It starts with screening policies and procedures for all staff and visitors.
There must be daily and periodic health assessment measures for your employees and anyone who is in contact with them.
Of course, it depends on your industry, field of business, and nature of work and that is what determines which protocols you are going to follow to ensure safety.
Many organizations, companies, facilities, and institutions have developed new work strategies and reduced working hours, office hours, days, and times to be able to ensure social distancing around the office.
Planning frequent cleaning sessions and enhancing housekeeping protocols is essential for your employees’ safety as well. Whatever you decide to do, make sure employees are required to wear protective masks, gloves, and face shields at all times.
Most organizations have decided to hire health and safety managers to evaluate, research, and develop plans and strategies to ensure safety after Covid-19. Even though remote working policies will be necessary, preparations for a few office visits may be vital for your line of business.
These health and safety professionals will collect all questions and concerns, research for answers, and collect data to guarantee the efficiency and effectiveness of employee office presence.
There are certain certifications that you can undergo, train your employees on and certify them that will help you execute those procedures easily.
Health organizations and professionals urge you to follow and read more about certain training and certification programs to be able to put an effective plan in place.
Make sure you take this step before asking employees to come back to the office and don’t forget about regular testing policies.
The level of communication is very important at all stages of returning to the office. You have to make sure all your employees are on the same page and understand exactly what they’re supposed to do at all times to ensure their safety and well-being.
Make sure your Marketing and Communication department assists in spreading protocols, policies, and procedures. You can also have your HR department include safety protocols and regulations in the orientation training.
You can also schedule certain training for existing employees and urge managers to execute plans and communicate regulations.
This is also a great time for you to consider hiring a compliance department if you don’t already have one to help employees stay on plan and get used to the new office and work routine.
You can also try and develop competitions, videos, infographics, and promote a culture that supports taking certain steps towards being extra cautious and getting used to the “new normal.”
The Covid-19 pandemic has led to a lot of anxiety about people surrounded by people or indecisiveness about going back to normal. There are impacts on an individual basis, group basis, and worldwide.
Returning to the office will have to happen slowly, carefully, and while following certain tactics and evaluating results on a going basis. You have to consider your employees’ emotional and mental states and re-evaluate your insurance policies.
Remember a few changes may initially force you to make a generous investment, but without it, the continuity of your business will be under greater threats.