The extent of the impact Covid-19 will have on businesses remains to be seen. However, by analysing recent trends, we can start to imagine and therefore plan how the ‘new normal’ for workplaces will look in the UK.
We have seen a surge in WFH (working from home) due to the government’s enforced lockdown, with many businesses adapting by embracing technology to enable remote collaboration with employees and clients.
This has forced many previously reluctant business owners to experience how achievable maintaining productivity and communication is while WFH.
The coronavirus lockdown has acted as a test-run for many, and we expect businesses capable of doing so, to continue to allow remote working in some form going forward.
While being an unexpected success for many businesses, WFH does however have it’s limitations:
- Staff feeling disconnected
- Being unable to separate work from home life
- More difficult to train staff
- Loss of productivity
- Inadequate home setup
- Loud children!
These are some of the reasons we may not see all UK businesses switching to 100% remote working just yet.
We are expecting a transition back to on site working over the coming months – but what do business owners need to do to achieve this?
The transition back into the office – where to start
Here at APS, we have been discussing how best to re-introduce our staff back into the workplace. Below, we share a 3 step action plan, along with how our services may also help you in these times.
- 1. Collect data – A good place to start is by carrying out a risk assessment in line with HSE guidance; https://www.hse.gov.uk/coronavirus/working-safely/index.htm Also, ask your staff their main concerns for returning to work. The feedback will differ from person to person, and staff want to feel like you have taken necessary action to ensure their safety.
- 2. Take action – Use the data you have collected from the risk assessment and your staff to take action and prepare your business for the transition – some ideas include:
- Carpet markings highlighting social distancing
- Hand sanitiser stations
- One way traffic flow where possible
- Partitions and screens in open plan areas (see below.. we can help!)
- 3. Move back in! (but keep your distance… for now) – Once you have successfully created a safe environment, it is time to reunite the team! Planning out a phased approach could work well – bringing back a few staff at a time and rotating teams.
If you are thinking of reconfiguring your office and need assistance with space planning to ensure social distancing, or are looking to add temporary or permanent screens / partitions – we have a variety of options available.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01553 691 202 for further information.