5 Key steps to take in order to return to the workplace safely

The 5S’s To Returning To Work

With the return to the workplace looking closer now than ever before, many businesses are now looking at ways in which they can safely begin to bring staff back to the office space.

We’ve developed a simple model of 5 key areas to consider when planning your return to the office space, we call it 5S:

1. Survey

Before you even return to the workplace and implement any procedures, it is important to listen to and understand staff concerns and thoughts about returning to the workplace. One size does not fill all when returning to the workplace, so it is crucial to fully understand your business needs and what your staff want when re-entering the office space.

We recommend you run a survey as part of the return-to-work planning period that highlights the concerns that staff have so you can successfully address these and attract them back to the office.

2. Space

The office space that was left behind over a year ago will need adaptations in order to adhere to new regulations, allow space for social distancing and future-proof the environment for newer ways of working.

We advise on analysing your current office layout and making adjustments that will cater to changing working trends. This can include adjustments to main desk areas to allow for greater agile working and social distancing measures, and creating limits on the number of people safely allowed into an area at one time, such as meeting rooms or canteens.

3. Socialise

A key aspect of the working life that has been lost for many over the past year, has been the social interaction with staff and their colleagues at work. In order to successfully attract staff back to the office, it is important that appropriate space is provided where colleagues can re-connect and socialise in a safe and compliant way.

This may require some adjustment to your current office layout to make additional space for socialisation and collaboration between staff, and ensure it is safe.

4. Sanitise

Hand sanitising and other Covid-19 protection has become the norm, and it isn’t going to go away whenever we return to the office. It is important to provide sanitising solutions, handwashing facilities and overall protection to help reduce the risk of the virus being spread throughout the office.

Ensure there is adequate Covid-19 protection available to all staff, including hand sanitiser at key touchpoints, adequate hand washing facilities, and protective screens around receptions and meeting rooms to reduce the risk of spread.

5. Secure

Once you have ensured your space is ready for the safe arrival of staff, it is important to observe any further changes that need made. Additional adaptations will likely be required, and it is crucial to ensure staff feel safe and secure in the office.

Run regular catch-ups or surveys with staff to ensure they are happy with the return-to-work progress and feel safe. Amends can then be made to meet any additional requirements

Is your office space Return To Work ready? We can assist with the above 5 areas through way of surveys, layout adjustments, and protection equipment.

Get in touch with our team of expert space specialists today to discuss your needs and prepare your space for the safe return of staff. | +44 (0) 28 9442 5200


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