How to return to the office safely

By GSR2R Admin | 11th December 2020

Recruiters… Are you looking forward to being back at work?

Recruitment business owners…are you ready for your teams to be back in the office?

Now lockdown is being eased and slowly but surely, everyone is starting to go back to work, how do you feel about it?

Here at GSR2R we are hearing mixed messages about it.  Some recruiters, we have been speaking to seem to love having the option to work from home but the vast majority, it seems can’t wait to be back in an office environment.  Recruiters, by their very nature, tend to be sociable animals and a lot are missing seeing their colleagues face to face and they miss the banter, camaraderie.

As a recruitment business owner, there are a lot of issues that need to be taken into consideration before staff can return.  Whilst lockdown is easing, the timing of any relaxation of restrictions is uncertain and owners may have to move quickly from one scenario to another and plan now for what is more likely to be a staged return over a longer period.

As a business owner, you will need to think carefully about how to take care of your teams and safeguard their health and well being. From talking to our clients, reading articles and listening to podcasts on returning to work, the general advice is:

Continued social distancing will be key and while this stays at 2m,  that will prove tricky for any business. How will meetings, 121’s and interviews take place.  What about communal areas such as kitchens, bathrooms? How will a social distancing policy be enforced?

Hygiene measures will continue to apply to minimise the spread of infection.  Hand washing, hand sanitiser and wiping of phones/keyboards with anti-bacterial wipes need to happen often.

Perhaps a re-induction process should take place for staff members returning to work.  Managers could have a 121 meeting with everyone with a focus on safety and well being.  Everyone should be given a clear plan about what to do should they develop symptoms or come into contact with someone who has Covid-19.  They will still need to self-isolate for 14 days.

The CIPD is urging businesses to ensure they can meet 3 key tests before bringing their staff back:

  • Is it essential… is it necessary to be back in the workplace or can people continue to work from home
  • Is it sufficiently safe…employers have a duty of care to identify and manage risks
  • Is it mutually agreed… there should be clear dialogue and there will need to be some degree of flexibility on both sides

For more information, read https://www.cipd.co.uk/knowledge/fundamentals/emp-law/employees/workplace-guide-returning-after-coronavirus

So although there may be a strong desire from recruiters to be back at the office, it may not be that simple.  Whatever happens next, communication will be key.  The pandemic has dramatically changed the way we work and we at GSR2R can’t wait to see what the new normal will look like in future.

Until next time,

Cheryl

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