After a long year of working from home, and another year of juggling part-time-office schedules, the time has come for most businesses to call their employees back for full-time-office roles. And while the whole work-from-home situation has been great in some ways—no commute, more family time, being able to wear sweatpants all day—it’s also taken its toll. Employees are tired of staring at the same four walls day in and day out, and they’re craving the social interaction and collaboration that can only happen in person. That’s where office facility management comes in.
Facility managers play a vital role in determining how to bring employees back to work. Businesses need to understand just how important it is for employees to feel safe and comfortable at their workplace in order to deliver their best output. If you are a smaller business without a dedicated facility management team, it is ideal to reach out to a facility management services company near you that can help establish a set of safety protocols at your facility. Here are some of the most essential safety points that facilities managers can help take care of as your employees get back to their desks.
Making Social Distancing Happen in Closed Spaces
The pandemic has forced many organizations to re-think the way they use their office space. It is important for businesses to take steps to ensure the safety of their employees. Office facility management can play a key role in helping to implement these changes. They can help to identify areas of the office that can be converted into closed spaces and make sure that they are properly ventilated. They can also train employees on how to use these spaces effectively and safely.
Reducing Workspace Density
If you are serious about bringing back your workforce, then the next important task on the list of office facility management is workspace density control. Reducing density is not just about creating enough distance between employees. It extends to tracking employee desk allocation, office facility access control, and even time-schedule allocation to common areas like the pantry or gym. Facility managers must take the responsibility of keeping close tabs on employee seating arrangements and must ensure that there is enough room for all members of the staff.
Sanitizing ‘Everything’ in Shorter Intervals
The COVID-19 situation is far from gone as the virus continues to make itself felt present every day with new cases and mutations. In this scenario, facility managers are scrambling to find ways to keep their employees safe and healthy. One of the most important things they can do is to periodically sanitize the office space. This will help remove any harmful contaminants that could potentially make people sick. The important thing here is that all cleaning activities must be repeated in short intervals, thereby ensuring that all surfaces are covered and that employees feel at ease. Facility managers make sure that all common areas are clean and disinfected on a regular basis. This includes doorknobs, light switches, elevators, and stair railings. Professional cleaning companies usually have experience in dealing with commercial spaces. They will know what products and methods are best for sanitizing an office space. They will also have the proper equipment to get the job done quickly and efficiently.
Managing Individual and Corporate Assets
Under normal circumstances, office facility managers follow some standard protocols to ensure that all corporate property and individual property are neatly managed. But with the pandemic in the background, employees are more likely to have concerns about sharing common assets with others. Here facility management plays a crucial role. By establishing an asset management system that limits the use of common properties to smaller groups and allocates designated use schedules for employees, facility managers can make sure that safety and health risks are kept to a minimum.
Communicating with Employees
As a business owner or office manager, you can take all the necessary steps to create the perfect work environment for your returning employees, but it is only going to be fully effective if your employees are aware of them. You need to effectively communicate with all members of your staff about the protocols in place so that they are aware of all safety measures implemented. However, with so many employees and so much going on, it can be difficult to keep everyone in the loop. Hence it is always a good idea to get your office facility management team to put up visible signs about all the safety protocols you have put in place. Follow that up with emails about the latest updates in employee-space allocation, sanitization schedules, social distancing reminders, etc, to help your employees understand just how serious you are about maintaining a safe and sanitized work environment.