The last 18 months have been unusual to say the least, and for those employees who have been able to work from home during the pandemic their working lives have been turned upside down. The difficulty of working from home, possibly whilst their partner does the same and also potentially home schooling children hasn’t made things particularly easy, however a new norm with new routines has probably crept in.
Now as all the COVID-19 precautions are removed and employers start to ask their employees to return to the office, for at least part of the week, it is quite likely that some of them may be a little anxious. They will be leaving their relatively safe home bubble and mingling with others in close proximity, and this is likely to make some of them feel quite anxious.
With this in mind it is really important for employers to create a workplace culture that is both productive and positive.
There are likely to have been plenty of changes since all your employees were last in the same place together. These could be changes in staffing, procedural changes or that you have moved things around in the office. The latter may have occurred in order to create a better flow through the office so that staff do not have to sit too close. It may also be that you have decorated the office space, streamlined it and generally given it a fresh new look. Whatever the reason, these changes can all come as a surprise to your staff so let them know what they can expect when they return to the office in terms of what they will find.
It is also a good idea to inform your staff of what you expect for them in terms of hand sanitising, face masks and general covid-safe routines. This should include any expectations there are regarding testing and of course self-isolating. These are all things that may make them feel anxious, but informing staff before they return will help to remove that stress.
Have the right office space
With the continued need to offer more space to employees within the office there has never been a better time to make some big changes. If you have been considering moving to new premises, then this could be just the time to make this decision. Commercial property in Derby offers some fantastic opportunities to companies looking to move premises, or even new companies looking for their first premises. Central locations with great transport links make it really easy for staff to commute and this can make their day less stressful.
Great facilities can really help to promote a positive work culture so look for somewhere that offers plenty of parking spaces, great onsite amenities like a cafeteria and onsite-security. These little extras can really help your staff to feel appreciated and will help to make the workplace feel like a more positive environment to be in.
Consider flexible working
Your employees have spent the last 18 months working in their own homes and proved that working from home can work. Consider running an office where every member of staff if they choose can work from home one day a week. Alternatively you may want to consider running a more flexible office, one where those employees whose jobs allow can work their hours, but start earlier, or later, and finish earlier, or later in order to work their hours in a way that fits their life.
This way you will get the hours you need, and they will have a little more flexibility. As long as you have the facilities to support this, it could benefit both your business and your employees.