How to create a safer work environment at your office post COVID-19
As people come out of quarantine and start going back to the office, they will be expecting increased health and safety measures at their workplace. In addition to this, they will have a heightened awareness and concern when it comes to sharing spaces and interacting with others. This is why companies must start reimagining their workplaces and take into consideration the necessary changes and costs for creating a healthier working environment.
Based on our experience providing shared and private office space to our tenants at Millyard Technology Park, we have put together this short, helpful guide to help everyone create a safer work environment post-COVID-19. These are the five areas employers and property managers should prioritize:
This is the process of improving the efficiency and effectiveness of existing equipment and systems within your building. For facilities and spaces that have remained closed due to the pandemic, it will be necessary to schedule a maintenance check to identify any deficiencies, uncover any infrastructure problems, and plan the necessary corrections or updates.
2. Air quality.
The post-COVID-19 work environment will demand improved ventilation and filtration systems to help mitigate the spread of pathogens and allergens. Many companies already have installed well-designed systems, however, it is recommended they monitor them frequently and conduct regular air-quality assessments.
3. Sanitation stations.
While keeping every area in the office clean should be routine, providing additional sanitary options will help mitigate the concerns some people may have. A quick and simple sanitary station only needs to have a roll of paper towel, Lysol or other cleaning products, hand sanitizer, and a trash can. Place them throughout your office, especially in high traffic areas such as entrances, cafeterias, and bathrooms.
4. Informative Signage.
As you start making changes and adjusting policies, it will be necessary for you to reinforce these messages. Visible signs can help you do this and help create an environment where people feel their health and safety is being looked after.
5. Update your outdoor spaces.
While the interior of your office space should be a priority, outdoor spaces where people can take breaks and step out of closed environments will be more critical than ever. Make sure you verify what enhancements can be made. From additional benches to sanitary stations, updating these areas will add a lot of value to your workplace.
To help people feel comfortable and safe, companies will need to make updates in office configuration. There are many areas to consider when making improvements, from structural and infrastructure changes to flexible schedules and remote work options.
Having too many people in a closed environment for prolonged periods of time will likely become a thing of the past. Since people are the main factor to keep in mind when designing your workplace, it will be necessary to ask important questions such as: whose physical presence is essential? As you begin to answer these questions, you may realize you may not only reduce your physical footprint but also start saving on the costs of maintaining a large office building.