It has been months since the corona-induced lockdown. And to be able to live the new normal with the economy trying to get back on track, workers need to go back to work. Some can continue working in the comfort of their homes while the rest needs to go back to the office.
How prepared are you to get back to work? Is your knowledge enough to keep yourself safe from the virus while in the office? This article is written to guide you with action to ensure your safety when going back to the office.
How to Maintain Social Distancing in Common Areas
The office common areas include the conference room, pantry, training room, and the toilet. A new arrangement should be set in the office wherein spaces should be larger with fewer people. Keeping about six feet of distance between people is a must.
Face to face interaction must be limited as well as gatherings like meetings to avoid people being in close contact with each other. As an alternative, video conferencing and virtual meeting tools can be used. Employers can limit the number of employees at a time by reducing employee’s working hours or changing the work schedules. Having visitors is also highly discouraged to allow only fewer people at work.
You should maintain the 6-foot separation rule even inside the lift. It is ideal to have one or 2 people inside it at a time, standing away and not facing each other. You should still wear your facemask and use hand sanitizer immediately after pressing the elevator button.
You can also make use of other objects to press the button for you, then spray it with alcohol after.
Sharing Public Facilities
You should avoid going in and using public facilities if you see a lot of people in it. Avoid unnecessary physical contact. As much as possible, wait for your colleague to leave before entering the facility to do your purpose.
If it can’t be helped, make sure that you are still wearing your mask on, armed with your hand sanitizer and alcohol, and avoid touching everywhere. Employers should also limit the thresholds to common areas to be able to monitor the number of people at a given time.
Open Office Plans
Employers and employees should coordinate with each other in setting up plans to maintain a Covid-19 free workplace. Your employer should ensure that social distancing is observed by considering the number of employees, their work schedules as well as their desks or workplaces at a given time.
Plans should also be laid out to maintain a productive and safe working environment. Precautionary measures must be clear to everyone, as well as the action plan just in case someone from the group got infected.
How to Clean the Office
A thorough cleaning should be done between shifts. Wipe the surfaces and objects with disinfectant regularly. You can use disinfecting wipes, spray, or a properly-diluted bleach solution.
Ensure sanitizing commonly touched surfaces like door handles, cupboards, phones, and desks. Put sanitizing hand rub dispensers around the workplace and these dispensers should be regularly refilled. Everyone should have access to areas where they can wash their hands with soap and water as washing can kill the virus and prevent its spread.
Cleaning your Personal Workspace
Make it a habit to disinfect your workspace at the start and after your shift. You can coordinate with your company’s maintenance team or you can do the honor of cleaning your workspace.
Make use of soap and disinfectant. Always clean your frequently touched objects like keyboard, mouse, and desk. Avoid visiting other’s workspaces to limit physical interaction and virus transmission.
You should also make use of your things and avoid sharing and borrowing stuff from your coworkers. Bring your mug, spoon, fork, and plates at work. Lastly, always look for barriers between you and the surfaces.
Cleaning Public Areas
When it comes to cleaning common areas, clean the surfaces using soap, water, and disinfectant regularly. Highly touched surfaces should be disinfected often including ATMs, tables, light switches, handles, keyboards, toilets faucets, sinks, and chairs.
Rearranging the Working Space
Your working space should be rearranged per the social distancing rule. Space desks should have a gap of at least six feet from each other. Make use of barriers like plexiglass.
Moreover, employees should not be stationed facing each other especially when there is no barrier. Remote and digital services are also vital to maintain the recommended distance.
Summing it Up
Keeping yourself safe when going back to the office is not just your employer’s responsibility, but actually yours too. Always bear in mind that the moment you get out of your house, there is a greater possibility of being infected and becoming a source of transmission. Thus, you must be well-updated on these measures to be able to protect yourself or combat this pandemic.
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