Five Tips for Safely Welcoming Employees Back into the Office
Updated: Jan 11, 2021
The COVID-19 pandemic has reshaped policies and procedures for businesses in nearly every industry. What once was a luxury for some—telecommuting or working from home—became a necessity as Americans took precautions to help slow the spread of the highly contagious virus. In an ideal world, all workers would follow those same guidelines; however, here in the real world, that’s simply not an option for every business.
As doors open again and employees return to work, it’s the business that bears the responsibility of ensuring proper protocols are in place. If your business is unsure about what steps to take, read on to learn how to safely prepare your workplace to welcome back employees after the pandemic.
Closely monitor expert recommendations
There’s a reason why groups like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) are considered experts on this matter. Both groups are made up of the foremost thought leaders and specialists in infectious diseases and workplace safety, and their recommendations should be closely followed. Additionally, local and state government orders and advice should be reviewed prior to welcoming any employees back into the building.
Perform a risk assessment
A risk assessment is a good way to identify any potential dangers or increased hazards that may make employees more susceptible to contracting COVID-19. To perform a proper risk assessment, you should review all aspects of the business and operations, including when employees will be in close proximity of each other or outside customers or visitors with whom they interact. If these actions are deemed dangerous, an alternative must be developed and implemented in order to keep employees safe.
Encourage proper hygiene
Frequent hand washing is one of the most important defenses we have against the spread of the virus. Make sure you are not only encouraging employees to take cleanliness seriously but that you are also making it convenient to do so. Soap, water, paper towels and masks should be readily and abundantly available for employees and any customers or visitors. In areas where a hand washing station isn’t feasible, you should be prepared to supply hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. In tandem with best practices in sanitation, any high-traffic areas or surfaces that receive regular touching must be frequently disinfected.
Remain vigilant, but be flexible
While these precautions may seem tedious, they really are for the good of your employees, customers and visitors—which means remaining vigilant is of the utmost importance. Part of that vigilance includes a policy that mandates workers who are feeling ill stay home and employees who have tested positive for the virus (or have been around someone who did) quarantining before returning to work. Company executives should lead by example, following these new policies to the letter. Because the future of COVID-19 remains unclear, and another spike in cases could arise, businesses must be flexible and willing to change procedures as necessary. These changes could include everything from working in shifts to adding mental health counseling to employee benefits for those struggling with the pandemic’s circumstances.
Hire a dedicated cleaning crew
Whether your company is looking for your first janitorial services vendor or you’re unhappy with your current partner, there’s no time like the present to find a provider with a robust COVID-19 cleaning capability. Janitorial services vendors you can trust have the cleaning supplies and the know-how to ensure your building is ready to welcome employees back and resume operations.
Whether it’s a deep clean that includes shampooing carpets and or a daily service to disinfect workstations, these hard-working professionals play a pivotal role in keeping your employees safe.
Enhanced cleaning & preventive detail includes:
Manually detail cleaning & application of Covid-19 approved disinfectant to the entire area, all horizontal and vertical surfaces.
Electrostatic Cleaning using “The Check Mate Electrostatic Cleaning System” provides rapid, uniform application of fast-acting chemicals to allow for exceptional coverage - using chemicals that boast the ability to kill viruses up to 10 times faster than competitive products. When liquids are charged electrostatically, a positive charge is added to each droplet as it propels through the sprayer. Like magnets, these droplets are attracted to surfaces - which typically carry a negative charge - and spread out uniformly along the surface.
Master Maintenance has been one of the Tampa Bay area’s most reliable and well-respected janitorial services vendors for nearly 40 years. We cater to clients’ needs across a variety of janitorial services, day porter and maintenance help, and 24/7 emergency response—including COVID-19 cleaning protocols.
If you’re interested in learning how we can help you prepare for your employees to return to the office, request a consultation or call (813) 873-2838 today.