Considerations for Employers Bringing Staff Back to the Office

social distancing work space

As the lockdown restrictions ease, it won’t be long before employees are back in the office. However, with new guidelines and restrictions in place, businesses need to ensure their workplace is ready.

If you’ll be welcoming staff back to the office, here you’ll discover some considerations you’ll need to take.


Ensuring you adhere to legal guidelines

First and foremost, you’re going to need to make sure your workplace adheres to legal guidelines. The government has an good range of resources you can refer to.

Generally, you should start by carrying out a Covid-19 risk assessment. This includes thinking about who is at risk, identifying how the virus could transmit through the office and how the risks can be controlled.  

Other guidelines to be aware of include increasing ventilation, restricting contact with employees who have symptoms and cleaning more often. Many businesses have also started taking employee temperatures to monitor them for signs of the virus.


Social distancing layouts

There is a good chance that your existing office layout isn’t suitable for new social distancing guidelines. This means you’re going to need to re-organise the workspace.

Making sure your staff sit at least 2m apart and that there is plenty of space to manoeuvre is essential. You should also place signs around the workplace, reminding your staff to follow safety procedures like washing their hands frequently.

Your risk assessment should have included any potential layout issues. So, follow the recommendations you identified when you are creating a social distancing layout. This includes ventilation considerations.


Planning business travel

Obviously where it is possible, you should avoid travelling for business. However, if you do have to travel nationally, there are some things you can do to keep your staff protected.

Always plan your travel in advance. Due to the increased risk, public transportation such as in the busy city of London should be avoided. You might also want to consider using serviced apartments in London, rather than staying in a hotel. This will limit your employee’s exposure to other people.

Also make sure your employees wear appropriate face masks where required. PPE is the best way to protect against the virus when travelling.

The above are just some of the considerations you need to make when you’re welcoming staff back to the office. Remember, if any of your employees can work from home, it is still advised that they do so. Face to face meetings should also be kept to a minimum and no spaces in the workplace should be crowded.