Updated: Jun 16, 2021
Alicia Peel | Wednesday 9th June 2021
In the last year, priorities for our workspaces have changed considerably. A greater reliance on virtual communication, the need for flexibility and new safety regulations have encouraged many of us to rethink how we can make these spaces as efficient as possible.
As we start to transition back to office-based working, our Seven Hills Workspace guide is here to help with creating a successful COVID-safe environment. Request to download our full guide here, or read our Top Ten points to consider below.
1 - Health and inclusivity
When planning for your staff to return to the office, safety and mental health measures may now also need to be considered. Staggered start times, alternating office-based teams and PPE provided on-site are all ways to ease your team back into an office environment without compromising on productivity. Communicating these new procedures clearly to your team will ensure that they are as effective as possible.
2 - The journey in
Locating suitable parking spaces and introducing flexible working hours to avoid rush hour can help make your team’s commute to work safer and more manageable.
3 - Reception and deliveries
To successfully coordinate visitors and deliveries, your front of house staff require additional protection. We recommend temperature readings, safety screens and regular health checks for these key members of your team, and appointment only arrivals for visitors.
4 - Remote working
As our attention shifts back to the office, it remains just as important to monitor remote working conditions, using wellbeing questionnaires, Display Screen Equipment (DSE) assessments and indoor air quality tests (IAQ). This is especially true for new employees who have been working remotely since joining.
5 - Communication and training
Newly implemented procedures will be most effective if staff are given training in the safety measures and are regularly kept up to date with changes. Communication in both directions is essential for understanding the evolving requirements of a safe working environment.
6 - Managing occupancy
Digital table markers, occupancy sensors and integrated technology can be used to assess whether there are under-utilised areas of your workspace, or if your team would benefit from more space to safely operate under current social distancing guidelines.
7 - IT & AV
To keep your IT infrastructure COVID-safe, we recommend reviewing policies on shared equipment and limiting touchscreens and control systems where possible. A functional AV system is more important than ever as we begin to integrate our home and office workspaces.
8 - Landlords and common areas
Building managers may already have revised systems in place regarding building access and communal areas. Knowing who is responsible for the management of entrances and exits, elevators, staircases and one-way systems can help facilitate an effortless transition back to the building for you and other occupants.
9 - Cleaning and maintenance
Before returning to the office, indoor air quality, WiFi networks and desk electrics should all be checked. To keep things as hygienic as possible, consider the use of antimicrobial fabrics for your upholstery and reducing touch points. Providing staff with their own sanitation kits in addition to your usual cleaning arrangements can help to give them control over their workspace and put their minds at ease.
10 - Design and layout
Now is the perfect opportunity to review the current layout and flow of your office. While making adjustments for safety, don’t forget that your space needs to represent your brand and culture, allow you to effectively collaborate with your colleagues and be somewhere that you enjoy spending time. The way that we work and collaborate has drastically changed over the past year, and offices now need to accommodate a greater variety of working environments.
GET IN TOUCH
If you would like to discuss any of the above points further or receive a free workspace consultation from a member of our friendly team, please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call on 07880 735285.