Considerations for Employers as Employees Return to Work

Cleaning COVID

01Are cleaning and sanitization being adjusted to prevent the spread of disease?
You will likely need to adjust your sanitation process to include deep cleaning that is performed regularly while the building is empty in order to clean the building of any potentially lingering virus (or other communicable diseases). You may also need to consider plans to increase normal sanitation practices. These should include:

  • increased access for staff to cleaning supplies, 
  • increased cleaning or adjustments for use of high-touch surfaces or high-traffic areas (such as communal spaces or shared equipment), and 
  • the following of guidelines from the CDC and the American Industrial Hygiene Association.
Health & Safety

02What guidelines are you putting in place to ensure the health & safety of your employees? This question encompasses many different aspects of work and will vary, based on your business. Some aspects you will want to consider include:

  • Will staff be required to wear masks, if not mandated? 
  • Should shared/communal areas of the office or building be closed (such as break rooms, kitchens, cafeterias, etc)? 
  • What are the guidelines for the number of people accessing shared spaces, such as elevators and restrooms? 
  • Is travel required for any of your staff? How will that travel be handled? 
  • How do you plan to communicate current and ongoing policy changes?
Screening Measures

03How will people access the building, and how can you ensure that those entering the building are healthy?

  • Will people receive a health screening as they enter the building? 
  • How many entrances are there? Will all access points be available? 
  • Will employees or visitors have their temperatures taken? 
  • Will you allow deliveries or visitors? How will they be handled?
Social Distance

04What is being done to ensure distancing?
Consider all the details of a workday for various positions. Does everyone have their own office, or will you need to distance workspaces and create barriers? In addition:

  • Will meetings be limited to a certain number of people? Are there rooms large enough to distance for meetings? How will shared spaces, like conference rooms, be sanitized? 
  • How will you communicate guidelines for shared spaces? 
  • Should you create occupancy limits for offices? 
  • If you have multiple locations, how will work and travel between the different offices be handled?
Occupency Level

05What occupancy level will the building or office return to?

  • Does your office have enough space to ensure that all staff can remain physically distanced?
  • Will all employees be returning to work at the same time, in alternating shifts, or in phases? 
  • Are staggered workdays an option? 
  • Will these adjustments be permanent or temporary? 
  • Will you ask employees to get a COVID test before returning? How frequently?

Keep in mind that the health and well-being of you and your employees is the ultimate goal. Communicating your current plans and continually updating employees will help reduce their stress, making this difficult situation somewhat easier. 

If you would like to have your staff tested, Neighbors Emergency Centers can help. Download this PDF to learn more about employee COVID testing.