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Social Distancing – 4 Ways To Adapt Your Office

Millions of people have been forced out of the workplace and into their home for longer than most of us anticipated. With a number of individuals being able to work from home, it is safe to say that working from home doesn’t have the same collaborative feel as being surrounded by your peers for 8 hours a day.

As social distancing is in place and lockdown measures have been ever so slightly eased, many workplaces have opened their doors again. Welcoming back hard-working staff members with the hope of settling back in to ‘normal’ work life.

As much as we all would love for ‘normal’ life to bounce back, unfortunately, this isn’t the case. Gone are the days of sitting near friends, holding board room meetings and lunching with your teams. Guidelines are now in place to be followed, and it’s more important than ever to ensure you and your employees feel safe with the surround they are in.

Returning to the office is both exciting and concerning but we’re here to talk you through 4 ways to adapt the office to create a safe, hygienic and well designed social distanced space.

Separate Your Workstations

A big part of returning to the office is the office design and looking at how the furniture can be arranged. Where possible, re-structuring the seating plan is an effective way to provide a safe 2 metre space, whilst still being able to communicate.

The plans you make are all about making sure all members of the team are safe. By providing each person with their own designated working space, you will limit the number of colleagues they come in to contact with, thus reducing contact and unnecessary contamination.

Acrylic Desktop Screens

Once the desks have been separated and the seating plan has been confirmed, it’s now time to look at additional measures you can take. Desktop dividers are a popular choice in the office but staying away from fabric dividers at this time could be beneficial.

Switch from fabric dividers to acrylic desktop screens to incorporate screens which can be sanitised throughout the day to reduce the spread of germs. In addition to the hygiene aspect, clear acrylic is ideal when you are looking to divide an area but still have perfect vision. Whereas, frosted acrylic offers more privacy in the areas that need it.

Create Clear Paths

Day in and day out we open and close doors to access different departments, and until now it wouldn’t have crossed our minds. However, with COVID-19 in the mix, it’s important that we don’t keep touching shared objects, such as door handles.

Creating a clear and open walkway is a simple solution. Keeping all doors open and where possible, enforcing a one-way system to minimise contact when travelling from one area to another.  

Hand Sanitiser

If you weren’t using hand sanitiser before, I’m sure you will be now! Hand sanitiser is in handbags, pockets, cars and distributed throughout workplaces to make sure you’re never caught short.

Hand sanitisers should be available to all employees at any point during the day. Providing designated areas with bottles of sanitiser will ensure all individuals are regularly washing their hands to reduce the spread of germs from area to area.

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Written by Vicky Peat

Vicky Peat is a Marketing Executive for Rap Industries based in Peterborough, UK. As a content marketing writer within the Office Furniture and Office Design industry, Vicky enjoys sharing industry knowledge to encourage and educate workplace professionals.

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