Have you been working from home this year? Back in September 2019, only a fraction of people who had transitioned to working from home during the COVID-19 pandemic had returned to their physical offices. However, the COVID vaccine rollout proposes that many workers will be able to go back into the office safely in the months ahead.
What do you need to know before making this important transition?
As a professional staffing agency, we connect workers with employers every day. We know that returning to the workplace after so much time at home can be a little overwhelming. This article will provide you with the advice you need to feel great about getting back to the in-person office this year.
1. Be Prepared for Changes
You probably had some great routines in the workplace before the pandemic hit. Unfortunately, some of those routines are going to be affected by new safety regulations. You need to be prepared for changes like these. Keep in mind that when you return to the office, most procedures will have changed.
Your workplace has likely made some day-to-day changes in operations to keep everyone safe. That may include physically distanced workspaces, fewer opportunities for close socialization, rules about masking and PPE, and more.
These changes may be a lot to get used to. Our advice is to think back to when you were new to the job and everything was new. You will be able to learn new habits and adapt to a new system of doing things, but don’t rush yourself. It can take time to get used to these changes.
2. Get Informed about Safety
This is related to those new patterns and routines we just talked about. Your employer very likely has a manager or supervisor team in charge of COVID-19 rules and regulations. They will be able to provide you with the most up-to-date information about how the company will keep you safe during this time.
For example, you should know in advance if you will need to bring your own PPE, or if it will be provided. You should also know what to expect in terms of contact tracing, ongoing quarantines, and what happens if someone becomes ill due to COVID.
3. Be Flexible
It’s important to be flexible. It’s an unpredictable time right now.
Even though you may be excited to get back to work because you’ll be able to work in proximity with your team, remember that not all of your coworkers will be returning to the office. Team members who are at high risk for complications if they get COVID may continue working from home. Some people will get vaccinated before others. Therefore, you will likely continue to work with some of your coworkers remotely.
If another lockdown occurs in your area, you may also return to working remotely. Be open about working in various stages and in various settings. Make a plan for being able to meet your professional obligations regardless of where you are, and be prepared to adjust as changes are made.
4. Recognize Your Feelings
Last but not least, it’s important to recognize that you may be feeling a lot of complicated and complex things about being back in the workplace.
You may be excited but worried about the major change in your routine. Maybe you’re dreading having to commute again, or perhaps you’re anxious about getting COVID. These are all valid feelings.
Now more than ever, people are experiencing mental health issues. Your mental health is important. If you need to talk to someone about any fears or anxieties you may be having, don’t hesitate to reach out to your support networks and get the help you need.
Looking for a New Position?
Liberty Staffing is here to help! If you’re looking for a new job, get in touch with us! We look forward to helping you find an in-person placement where you can feel safe, valued, and connected!