With the COVID-19 pandemic, many businesses have been forced to change up how their employees work. Offices around the world have been allowing employees to work from home for the past few months. For some businesses this has been a success, whereas others have struggled to adapt to the new method of running a business.
In some cases, this will be a more long-term method of keeping employees safe. Major tech companies are extending their work from home measures for the rest of the year.
Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai said during a meeting last month that Google employees will likely work from home for the rest of 2020. However, those who need to return to the office can do so from June or July.
CEO Jack Dorsey said that unless people are required to be physically present at the office, Twitter employees will be able to work from home permanently.
Facebook will open its offices in July, but the majority of employees will be able to work from home until at least the end of 2020.
Other companies such as Microsoft, Slack and Amazon have extended their work from home policies until at least October. With no one really knowing what to expect for the rest of the year, it’s hard to say when things will return to normal.
Will you extend your work from home policy?
While massive tech companies have more resources and flexibility to let hundreds of people work from home, this might be more difficult for smaller companies.
However, with fewer employees to manage, this could be even easier to manage than bigger firms.
If you have experienced positive results with your current work from home measures, it could be worth extending them for the foreseeable future. However, if this isn’t the case, it could be time to put a return to the office plan in place.
Planning your return to the office
Working from home is a bit more difficult for some businesses and they will inevitably be looking forward to returning to the office soon.
If you are planning to open your office soon due to lockdown easing measures, there are still some safety precautions you’ll want to take to ensure the health of your staff.
Some ideas for safety measures include:
- Handing out masks and gloves
- Hand sanitisers on each desk
- Fewer in-person meetings
- No buffet foods/communal fruit baskets
- Staggered arrival times
- Staggered return to work
- Limit people travelling in lifts
- Frequent deep cleaning of workstations, door handles and kitchen equipment
- Screens in between workstations
- Socially distanced workstations
- Only have certain people in the office/alternate which employees work from home and the office.
While it will take some getting used to, these measures are important to safeguard your employees and yourself. Any new measures you bring in should be clearly communicated to all employees whenever possible. It might be a good idea to print out signs or desk notes to remind people.
Are you planning a return to the office or will your business be working from home for longer? What safety measures are planning to bring to your office? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.