According to the Minneapolis- St Paul Business Journal, office building property managers and tenants should begin making a plan for returning to workplaces now, experts say, even though it’s unclear when many businesses will reopen.
Cushman & Wakefield developed a guide to reopening workplaces based on its experience moving its own employees and clients back into more than 800 million square feet of properties globally amid the pandemic. To read the complete guide, click here.
Below are six essentials that the real estate services company is sharing for property managers and tenants:
1. Prepare the building: Cleaning plans, pre-return inspections, check HVAC and mechanical systems
2. Prepare the workforce: Mitigate employee anxiety, develop policies for deciding who returns and for employee communications
3. Control access: Develop protocols for safety and health checks, building reception, shipping and receiving, elevators, visitors
4. Create a social distancing plan: Decrease density in offices and elevators, schedule management, office traffic patterns
5. Reduce touch points and increase cleaning: Open doors, clean desk policy, food plan, cleaning common areas
6. Communicate for confidence: Recognize the fear in returning, communicate transparently, listen and survey regularly
Mitigating employee fear of returning to work should be a top priority for employers, according to Cushman & Wakefield, and employers should develop a plan to address this.
“To help employees through what will be a turbulent, stressful and unpredictable return to work, organizations should focus on the personal experiences of their employees from a work and life perspective,” the report states. “It’s critical to understand how the pandemic has impacted their personal connection to the culture of the organization. It’s also important to understand if employees feel their organizations are caring for them, as well as understand how to improve and advance that care during the return to the physical workplace.”
You can read more about the planning guidelines -> here.