After a seemingly long COVID-19 induced break from the workplace routine, many businesses are looking to reopen their offices. Despite the major safety concerns, employees are also looking forward to getting back to their workplaces to end the furloughs and remote working stress.
Employers are planning their back-to-workplace safety strategies to ensure employee health and workplace wellness after reopening.
Here are a few possible changes to be expected in most of the workplaces to minimize COVID-19 infection, while still helping with employee engagement.
Controlling Employee Amassing
The on-premise businesses especially, restaurants, factories, and warehouses, are at a higher risk of the coronavirus infection and spread, as the machinery and human elements in these environments are easily prone to contamination. To ensure safe employee health and overall workplace wellness, businesses are implementing the Traffic Light System Strategies. The traffic light system involves installing a yellow and green traffic light system in contained spaces like board rooms, or washrooms, where only limited numbers of people are allowed at a time, to assure the social distancing norms. This traffic light system could become a common element at workplaces to control and manage the flow of employees and visitors.
Technology Application and Automation
Be it because of the recent layoffs or as a part of the social distancing strategy, many businesses are minimizing the number of on-site employees. However, to deliver the working outcomes on time, employers are investing more in technological applications and robotics to ensure automated and seamless production. Although automation and technology were prevalent way before COVID-19, the current situation calls for the imperative use of advanced technological applications, robotics, and automation tools.
However, there are a few shortcomings with the implementation of new automation tools and technological integration. Lack of skilled manual labor to handle and manage technological advancements, less technical expertise, or space shortage could be potential automation barriers. Employers can take adequate steps to educate and train the onsite workers to ensure smooth working solutions and for workplace wellness.
Changeover to Virtual Workplace
Studies report that many companies, especially in the manufacturing industry, may return to the workplace with only 50% of the working employee strength. However, to get their businesses running, employers are looking for new employee engagement strategies to coordinate the onsite and offsite employees. Employers can encourage split-shift scheduling for maximum workable processes. Also, the remote working and onsite workers should be equipped adequately to encourage uninterrupted virtual discussion and support.
Shift in Workplace Dynamics
Irrespective of the size, the majority of businesses have an on-site working area. With the fall in the number of worksite employees and to maintain social distancing among the onsite workers, employers are looking to restructure the workplace dynamics and layout. By creating specific zones across different working teams, and digitizing the workflow, employers can ensure better employee engagement within the workforce, and also, ensure workplace wellness.
Despite the businesses taking a toll with the COVID-19, many employers are still prioritizing their employee health and workplace wellness. They are planning their back-to-business strategies with the right changes, tools, and support to embrace employee safety and also adapt to the current situation.