2020 has been a strange year, to say the least. The COVID-19 pandemic has changed lives dramatically and unfortunately has touched some with tragedy. The world almost completely shut down, and everyone has had to face the challenges of being stuck at home with or without work to do. Parents with children in school have also had to become teaching assistants, and people have struggled to keep themselves in good shape, both physically and mentally. The world waits for bated breath for the light at the end of the tunnel.
Yes, the last few months have been challenging and continue to be, but things are gradually changing, and some workspaces are beginning to reopen. If you’re an employee who is returning to work, or a business owner planning to welcome back your staff and customers, here are some things you MUST do to ensure your workspace is safe.
Distance Desks and Tables
Social distancing is a phrase that has been on everybody’s lips this year, and it’s an important part of reducing the spread of the virus. Whether your business is office-based, a retail store, or a bar/restaurant, you need to be spacing things out. 2 meters is the recommended distance, so keep your staff working from every other desk or counter. Space out tables and only have every other toilet cubicle in use where possible.
Create Sanitizing Stations
There are touch free sanitisers available for businesses to purchase, and creating a few sanitizing stations around your workplace is essential. These are both for staff and customers: be sure to place clear signs insisting that they are used on your station, too.
Take Out Options
If your business is a restaurant or café, consider only reopening as a takeout service. Although this might limit how many customers you have in, this will help keep your staff and diners safer. Many restaurants have still been successfully trading via takeout options during the pandemic, and a lot of people are still wary about eating out anyway. You might even find this is a more cost-effective method for the time being.
Reduce People in the Workplace
Instead of having all your staff return to work immediately, consider who can still work from home. Some offices will need certain employees back in more urgently, but with the majority of businesses still running thanks to video calling and setting up business networks at home, mobile working is much safer. In some cases, it has even increased productivity.
Although wearing face masks in offices isn’t compulsory everywhere, it should be encouraged. Yes, they can be uncomfortable, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. Don’t force your staff to do this if they don’t want to, but consider providing face masks for those that do or for those that change their mind.
It’s certainly been a wake-up call for everybody having to face a crisis such as this, but it should also be seen as an opportunity for positive change. Keep yourself, your staff, and your customers safe when you reopen for business and make sure you have all these things in place.
Photo by Edmond Dantès from Pexels