Sooner than later, we’ll go back to our day-to-day lives and to our workspaces and offices — under new perspectives, guidelines, and regulations. We’ll have to do our collective best to prevent any further spread of contamination to our colleagues by practicing new health and safety measures. At Unicorn Workspaces Portugal we’ve been figuring out some easy yet effective methods to guarantee a safe workplace in the face of a public health emergency.
That’s why we have prepared these 10 measures to be implemented to make the behavioral change for everyone easier.
1. Give old gadgets a new purpose
“ BEEP! BEEP! BEEP! ”
Alert! We’ve heard these sounds our entire lives. Set up blinking alarms, cuckoo clocks or gongs, reminding the teams to sanitize screens, keys and keyboards every 2 hours. — we must take the time and have the patience to incorporate these habits into our daily routines.
2. Make clear who is in charge
Appoint someone from the team who will be in charge of executing and enforcing prevention measures in a responsible manner. If you run an office, this person will obviously be you. Combine this action with communication measures, including guidance from occupational health and safety employees, instructions from meetings and information on the intranet, internet, and trusted sources.
3. Create clean desk policies
From Order Breeds Habit, so create clean desk policies — that allow surfaces and individual areas to be properly cleaned daily and updated by the facility maintenance crew to ensure these steps are taken and guaranteed for the hygienic safety of all.
4. Transparency is Key- Do what you say, and say what you do
A clean-kept registry of spaces and places that have been disinfected should be placed in a visibly accessible area for all workers to consult. Hours the area was cleaned and with which products were used to disinfect the area should be cataloged for the benefit of anyone who wants to know this vital information. When sanitation is the lock to our collective survival, transparency is key to opening the doors to our goals and success in the long run.
5. Friendly Reminders in the office :)
People respond well and remember a message clearer with creative approaches. So why not get the design or marketing departments to team build some great ideas of visual representations? For example; some easy to recognize stickers placed for each fingerprint or key access point, so no one forgets to cleanse them; or, create respiratory hygiene posters to put around the collective area with messages like, “Sanitize me!”; even daily notification emails with a funny Meme or .gif! Have fun with it!
6. Give’em some Space!
The reduction of employees per room is not only important, but it’s also very essential. With a minimum area of 1–2 square meters around each person, physical distancing is one of the most crucial practices to keep safe and healthy. Digital technologies have taken over the world. Most of us constantly carry our smartphones or have access to at least 1 personal computer, these can bridge our physical distance, even while social distancing measures are in place *Don’t forget to clean your touch screens!
7. Hands Up! Let me check your Temperature!
Having a thermometer available for on the spot from now on is standard. If someone suspects they are having symptoms, a well-equipped med-box with a thermometer and disposable single-use materials is ready for action when needed. Being prepared to catch early warning signs of COVID contamination is of utter importance to maintain a clean and healthy area of work. Have the E.P.U (Epidemic Prevention Unit) at the front door, always ready to check the temperature of those suspected to be running a fever.
8. Carry the Essentials
Indispensable items like sanitizers, disinfectants, soaps, gloves, and masks (apparently toilet paper too) will become fundamental to assure everyone’s protection within the work environment. The strategic placement of touchless hand sanitizers all through the establishment is decisive, especially near entrances or exits so inhouse collaborators and visitors have access to sterilize any nasty little Coronaviruses hiding in your palms.
9. Open Windows is the new Air Conditioning
Commodities that we’ve learned to adore, like the air conditioner, are now an object of the past. A study published by the Centers for Disease Control finds that due to air not being able to circulate new fresh-air into the environment, an air conditioner provides the perfect atmosphere for it to thrive on the air currents an A/C provides. That’s why the good old fan, air purifiers with ionic capabilities, and open windows will be our best friends this summer.
10. If you are in touch with all teams, wear a mask
Baristas & Community managers should use gloves and a mask when preparing coffee or food, at least until there is an All-Clear.
It is certain, that the way people look at public and collaborative spaces will change forever. So by having a rigorously organized, practical and prude plan of attack against the coronavirus should help mitigate risks for employers and employees once we head back to the workspace.
There are going to be greater expectations for health and hygiene standards in restaurants, offices, warehouses, and so many other sectors and industries. And yes, it’s very probable social interactions will be different too. Maybe the handshake belongs to the past? Who knows!? The good news is, that this isn’t so bad if you have a plan in motion.
By executing these basic and simple measures, all will be benefited from a more hygienic, safe and healthy work environment. By no means do these measures completely prevent or puts an end to Coronavirus — but they will counter-attack and thwart COVID-19 from spreading even more.
Prevention procedures are put in place to limit and contain infections or infected from further contamination. This type of control effort and new practicable habits are necessary if we are to live socially in our day-to-day. In order to that, we must be civil and maintain cleanliness and safe social practices.