Preparing for your staff to return to the office? Working safely during COVID 19.

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Preparing for employees to return to the office safely is a hot topic at the moment, but where do you start??

Carry out a Risk Assessment;

  • Assess and manage the risk. Start by identifying sensible measures to control the risk of contracting COVID 19 in your workplace.  Consult your staff as part of the process and try using an interactive tool like this one to help you

Managing Risk;

  • As we know frequent handwashing is top of the list here, provide anti-bacterial hand wash and paper towels for drying.

  • Provide hand sanitiser facilities around the office

  • Increase the amount of office cleaning that takes place.

  • Help employees work from home where possible or stagger their office hours.

  • Maintain a 2m distance between all employees – use screens or barriers where necessary.

  • If you work in a big office, reduce the amount of people each person has contact with, by using fixed teams or partnering.

  • Share the results of your assessment with your staff.

Social distancing at work;

  • In addition to the above make sure you consider entrances, exits, break rooms, storage / locker facilities, canteens and similar settings.

  • Use markings to introduce one-way flow at entry and exit points

  • Avoid use of hot desks and sharing of equipment

  • Eliminate physical contact by agreeing on a company-wide greeting technique. Handshakes and hugs should be discouraged.

Employee welfare;

  • Consider giving free gloves and masks

  • Ensure your staff have all the tools and support they need to work from home where possible


  • Continue using remote working tools, such as Zoom or MS Teams

  • If face to face meetings are essential hold them outdoors or in well ventilated rooms

Finally provide clear guidance to employees and any likely visitors on social distancing.  Use visual aids and reiterate your policy on arrival.

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