As many businesses are looking to return to the office in the next few months, developing a plan or even knowing where to start can feel overwhelming. Managing remote employees, practising social distancing when possible, and remaining flexible as recommendations and official orders change are all components businesses need to balance during this unprecedented time.
Regardless of when your business plans to return to the office, having guidelines and a plan in place is key to managing the current, changing landscape of ‘business not as usual.’
Some of the tools that Meeko has incorporated into our return to work strategy that we have found useful are below:
Create a survey to get feedback from your team
Getting transparent and honest feedback from your team is crucial when planning your return to work strategy. Not only is having relative numbers for those who are able to return to the office immediately important logistically, but gauging how each individual feels is imperative for maintaining morale.
We sent out a survey to our team members that allowed everyone to answer anonymously their concerns, thoughts, and willingness to return without fear of judgement from others. Rather than asking broadly in a team meeting, this tool allows you to obtain data that will be useful when preparing your office according to new social distancing and safety measures.
Develop a multi-phase plan
Rome wasn’t built in a day- and neither is a company’s return to work strategy. Remaining flexible and open during this process is helpful for company morale and efficiency as recommendations are constantly changing. Consider only having a few low-risk employees return to the office on a voluntary, ad-hoc basis to ensure safe working measures. This will allow those who feel comfortable to return the opportunity to assimilate back into office life while also respecting those who are still working remotely.
By incorporating team members slowly and in phases, it decreases the risk of overwhelming the office and creates a smoother transition that considers each individual’s concerns. A multi-phase plan also allows you to ensure the working environment is equipped with enough PPE and sanitation stations for the number of people in the office at one time.
Communicate, communicate, communicate
Quite possibly the most important tip when creating your return to work strategy is to support open and constant communication throughout your team. Whether this takes the form of additional surveys, weekly catch-ups, or just an overall understand to share concerns and thoughts throughout the process, it is essential to keep an open dialogue during this transition.
Overall, gathering honest feedback, incorporating a multi-phase plan, and communicating with your team members throughout the process are key elements to consider when developing your businesses’ return to work strategy. And while your strategy may even change over the next coming months, supporting your team and maintaining a flexible perspective will assist in this process long-term.
For more information regarding your company’s return to work strategy, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s chat!