It’s vital that as workplaces reopen and we enter a post-COVID world, employers prepare the office to ensure that staff feel safe. Read our tips here.
As vaccines are rolled out and life tentatively moves towards a ‘new normal’, many businesses will start reopening or considering a phased return to work. Although some of us have taken to working from home, teams always benefit from collaborating and there will always be a need for the office.
A survey from the Trades Union Congress (TUC), however, reported that 39% of staff felt concerned about staying socially distanced in the workplace. It’s vital that, as workplaces reopen, employers prepare the office to ensure that staff and visitors feel safe and protected from the unpredictability of the future.
Protecting the workforce during the pandemic
Many commercial areas have already adapted to the pandemic by installing protective screens to shield key workers and customers. Hand sanitising and face mask wearing has become the norm in many establishments.
Offices have had to adapt too, with the introduction of new hygiene rotas, an increase in the volumes of video calls and working from home options, and a limited number of employees in the workplace at one time.
These changes have helped to keep staff protected, but how we work will need to continue to adapt as we emerge from the pandemic. Companies should now begin to view the historical challenge as an opportunity to futureproof their offices. So, exactly how can the office adapt to a post-COVID world?
Permanent Glass Partitioning
Social distancing solutions, such as glass partitioning and protective desk screens, are here to stay. An office preparing for the future should view these as a long-term solution that create a safe space for employees and reduce the spread of viruses. Not only this, but glass partitioning is becoming increasingly popular within workspaces because of its modern and stylish appearance. Physical dividers come in all shapes and sizes to suit most offices, from full height walls and partitions to smaller screens for individual workstations.
In a world where coronavirus is less of a threat and we are vaccinated for our protection, other diseases and germs will still exist. Whilst most offices have cleaners to ensure a standard level of sanitation is maintained, a push for individual cleanliness can reduce the spread of illnesses in the future, such as the common cold.
Employers can help their staff maintain good hygiene by installing sanitiser stations that are regularly refilled for employees to use when they enter or leave an office, as well as throughout the day.
Communal areas like bathrooms, kitchens and meeting rooms will require stricter, more frequent cleaning rotas and regular disinfecting.
Offices looking to maintain a high level of hygiene can introduce motion sensor soap dispensers, taps, toilet flushes as well as automatic doors and lifts to reduce communal touchpoints that could spread viruses.
How offices prepare for the ‘new normal’ work life can have long lasting benefits for the health of staff and company finances alike. And starting preparations now can mean there is less to do when workplaces are able to reopen.
Author bio: Glass Partitioning UK is a family run business, originally founded in 1993. They have completely transformed the process of ordering glass partitions.