With the Coronavirus lockdown slowly being lifted, people are starting to go back to work, but with certain restrictions. Social distancing, masks, and hand sanitizer are just some of the safety precautions we have to adapt to in what’s being called the “new normal.”
Although restrictions can vary depending on where you live, it’s important for companies to take employee concerns into consideration before reverting back to normal working hours. Returning to the office can cause uncertainty and fear and, since we don’t know what’s going to happen in the coming months, it can be tricky to gauge when the conditions are right and our employees are ready to return to the office.
Make a smooth transition back to the office
If your company is telecommuting, by this point your employees will have adapted to their new routines at home and will need support from managers and HR when offices open back up.
Company management should organize a communication and action plan that addresses security measures being taken in both nationally and in the company. Presenting the plan is a crucial moment; all employees must understand the various guidelines and policies, as well as the importance of following them closely.
Check employees’ emotional status
Employees’ feelings and stress levels should be taken into account before returning to the office. If your company was already doing emotional checklists during the quarantine, you’re ahead of the game.
Just like the checklists, surveys are a great way to see how employees are feeling as they work from home and whether or not they’re ready to come back. There will be those who, for personal or family reasons, need to keep working from home a little while longer.
To make sure all employees are involved, you can conduct individual sessions with them or share the survey publicly for a determined period of time. The results will help you identify your team’s needs and expectations when implementing the action plan.
Be a leader in change management
The company’s managers should be able to handle the potentially complicated process of change. This may include predicting possible scenarios, running a SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats), and taking on team feedback.
In order to ensure the safety and health of the employees, all possible outcomes must be taken into account. Before returning to the office, when considering different possible measures, it’s good practice to use a checklist that lets you track the entire process.
Leading with transparency and decisiveness is key to a smooth transition.
Embrace online training as an ally
Quality training processes allow companies to increase employee knowledge and skill, giving them the tools to do their jobs more efficiently. These days, organizations have the option to move this training online, delivering employees the information they need about new policies or scenarios in a more dynamic and engaging way.
Customizable e-training courses such as ADA allow companies to adapt their training content on the fly in a fun and memorable way.
Learn how DKV Seguros spiced up their compliance training and achieved a 98.6% recommendation rate among employees in the process.
To sum up, returning to the office doesn’t have to be a nightmare. By applying the right resources and policies, companies can make it an intuitive and straightforward process. How do you think your company will do in the following months?