With a record low for COVID-19 cases in so many locations across the world including New Zealand, Australia, Singapore, and Many South Eastern Asian countries, there has been a stark increase in the number of office workers that are making their way back to office and preparing to settle into the new, post-COVID norm of working from the office.
But just how different will the post-COVID work environment look in 2021? With so many workers now accustomed to remote work and working from home, employers have a responsibility to make the workplace safe and comfortable for all workers as they transition back into the office. We have put together a list of three simple initiatives that employers can look to implement to ensure that all workers feel safe upon their return to the office in 2021.
Provide Hand Sanitizer – In Abundance
Let’s face it, 2020 has been a definitive year for personal hygiene and will completely change the way that we look at personal hygiene standards going forward. Products such as Hand Sanitiser in Sydney offices is now commonplace. Employers have a responsibility to provide all workers with ample access to hand sanitiser and personal hygiene products that make them feel safe on their return to work.
Workplace Comfort is Essential
2020 will forever be remembered as the year that we scrambled between bed and Zoom meetings with a presentable upper half and pyjama bottoms down below. To make the return to work as comfortable as possible, employers need to ensure that they are providing a comfortable place for workers to spend 7-8 hours each day.
Nice touches such as ergonomic furniture, and comfortable spaces to relax on break can help to workers to ease their way back into the formal work environment. A study from Social Norms in 2021 found that almost 68% of workers felt that they would be more inclined to head back into the office or split their time between home and office if the environment was more comfortable.
Focus on Deliverables
The year of 2020 put deliverables at the forefront of the work schedule. Historically, employers had seen time at desk and time at office as a litmus test for how effective workers were. In 2020, we say this metric go out the window as more employers favoured output over arbitrary measures such as time at desk. This trend must continue in 2020 and employees must be rewarded for their output, and not for the time that they spend at their desk.