Locations

Returning to the Workplace: Our Return to Work Plan

As lockdown measures ease and businesses begin tentatively returning to the workplace, employers are faced with an unprecedented task: how to handle a phased return to work which foregrounds the physical and mental wellbeing of all staff.

Clearly, the COVID-19 crisis is far from over. We are still uncertain as to how the coming months will play out and what further developments lie ahead. That is why flexibility is so important right now, as is the need to stay abreast of the news and latest announcements as they happen.

What safety measures have we put in place?

At Needspace?, the safety and peace of mind of all our clients is our number one priority. We have worked hard to put measures in place to optimise hygiene and ensure our clients’ businesses continue to run as smoothly as possible. The new measures we have put in place include:

  • Social distancing

We are enforcing mandatory social distancing rules in all our centres, including 2m marker lines on floors.

  • Hand sanitising stations

We have installed hand sanitiser stations at key points within our centres, which are regularly checked and refilled.

  • Communal area cleaning

We have doubled down on our daily cleaning and sanitation of communal areas. Everywhere receives a clean every day.

  • Signage

We have put up signs throughout our centres with reminders to adhere to rules and guidance.

  • Kitchen restrictions

Our communal kitchen areas are operational, albeit with reduced seating capacity. Doors are kept open and the kitchens receive more regular building checks from the Centre Manager. 

What has stayed the same?

As well as adapting to the changes that the crisis has brought, we are also trying to keep things ‘business as usual’ as much as possible.

Meeting Rooms

Meeting rooms are available for use, being kept extremely clean with daily cleaning using virucidal cleaning products. 

Viewings

We are still accommodating viewings for potential new clients. We will show you around while wearing a protective face covering, and we will ask that you wear one too.

Flexible Licences

We continue to operate from just a minimum three-month contract, with one month’s notice required thereafter. For queries regarding ongoing space requirements, the Sales Manager is on hand as usual.

Manned Reception

The Centre Manager is still available every working day to help with anything you need.

Advice for your Business’ Return to Work Plan

Travelling to the Workplace

Employees may have concerns about returning to the workplace post lockdown. This will be particularly pertinent for those who usually travel to work using public transport, and for those staff who may be vulnerable or caring for vulnerable family members. As an employer, it is crucial that the needs of staff are taken into consideration on an individual level.

It is important that the team be adaptable, as some members of staff may be unable to return to the workplace and will have to continue working from home. The team may need to work in harmony on each other’s tasks in some roles. 

Returning to the Workplace

Before returning to work in the office, there are three key questions employers will need to answer:

  1. Is it essential?

Unless it is crucial for business operations, employers should allow staff to continue to work from home for the foreseeable future. 

  1. Is it safe?

Before bringing staff into the workplace again, employers must identify and manage risks to ensure the space is safe and hygienic. A phased return to work is advisable, allowing time to test how measures taken work in practice before gradually allowing larger numbers of staff to come back. 

  1. Is it mutually agreed?

Listening to staff, their needs and their concerns, has never been more important. Both sides will need to demonstrate understanding and practise flexibility around changing working hours and schedules. 

The Risk of a Second Wave

No one knows how COVID-19 will react to the change in temperature as we move into autumn and winter. The UK is bracing itself for a second wave, so planning ahead and being prepared for any eventuality is wise. While returning to the workplace may work, at least partially, for now, businesses need to remain adaptable to moving from one scenario to another quickly. Should another lockdown occur, the ability to immediately move staff to working from home again should be feasible at short notice.

Key Resources for your Return to Work Plan

Find out more about returning to work with Needspace?

If you have any questions about how to manage the return to work or wish to discuss your business’ changing requirements and need for office space, get in touch. We would be more than happy to chat with you about your needs and how we can help you and your business to continue to thrive during this difficult time.

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