It could be happening now or in the future, but businesses are facing the decision of whether or not to call their workers back to the office. This means that many workers are heading back to the office after a year away.
While some people have been working from home, others have been out of work for much of the last year. If your company is struggling to find highly qualified, effective workers to fill open in-person positions, reach out to Liberty Staffing! We can help you find the workers you need.
Here are four ways to keep your workers feeling safe and comfortable when they inevitably return to the office.
1. Don’t Assume Everything Will Be the Same
People have been affected by COVID-19 in a lot of different ways. There is no single common experience. Some people were stuck at home for months with a partner and kids, while others dealt with long periods of social isolation.
Some people loved working from home, and others couldn’t wait to return to the workplace.
Regardless of each individual’s experience, it’s worth remembering that managers will need to help people readjust to workplace life. Internal policies are likely to have changed as well, with necessary adaptations to daily processes and workflow.
2. Be Patient as Employees Adapt to New Routines
Patience, patience, patience! Repeating this mantra will help you guide your team back to the in-person workplace.
Not everyone will adapt immediately to all of the changes. You may find yourself needing to remind people of mask rules, social distancing guidelines, and more. If you have different guidelines for vaccinated and unvaccinated staff, it will take effort to enforce two sets of rules.
Some workers may still be at home, whereas others are working a hybrid schedule from changing locations. Will everyone need to get used to new methods of communicating? Will meetings need to take place with an in-person and online component?
3. Let Go of Outdated Systems
With all of these big changes, it may be tempting to hold onto systems that worked in the past. But sometimes it’s worth taking a fresh look at your existing methods. This is the perfect opportunity to make those changes!
Here is an example: a company was using a pretty complex time monitoring system in the office that required employees to track each of their daily activities in the office. This wasn’t a very popular system, but management felt it was necessary to promote high productivity. During the shutdown, this system wasn’t usable because of a software issue, and for the short term, workers didn’t have to use this clocking system. To management’s surprise, productivity continued to go up, even though their employees were at home and unable to use the system.
When that company brings people back to the workplace, should they automatically reinstate the use of that program? Or should they use this as a perfect opportunity to re-evaluate and find a system that promotes increased productivity while avoiding worker frustration?
Don’t fall into the trap of doing things “because that’s the way it’s always been done.” Be open to new ideas!
4. Follow Local and Provincial Pandemic Guidelines
Some workers are going to be anxious about the return to the office, especially if they are uncertain about whether or not you’re going to have their best interests at heart. Are you doing your part to keep your team safe and healthy? Assuming you are, your workers need to see how that is going to happen!
Clearly stating that you will be following all local and regional guidelines for re-opening will put people’s minds at ease. Be informed, develop proactive policies, and communicate those to your workers through clear written and verbal instructions.
Find Your New Team!
Liberty Staffing has helped countless employers find workers throughout the pandemic, including online and in-person team members.
If you’re looking to hire new in-person staff, we’re here to help! Check our Client FAQ List to learn more about our services and why it benefits you to work with a staffing agency!
Ready to talk about your options? Get in touch with us today! We look forward to matching great workers with your great company!