Over the past few months, many employees have had to get used to working from home; it was the only way to minimise the risks of COVID-19 contagion. However, even though the pandemic’s still not under control, it might be high time to update your office furniture, get back to the office, and bring back some sense of normalcy. Otherwise, you might be putting your company culture at risk.
The Ups and Downs of Working at Home
Working from home has many advantages. It gives your employees more flexibility, helps them achieve a better work-life balance, and increases their work satisfaction. Not to mention that it was vital for flattening the curve of the pandemic.
It also presents many benefits to the employers, as they could end up saving annually up to $11,000 per employee.
However, despite the new tech that enables seamless communication and collaboration wherever your employees are, there’s a reason why offices still exist. They bring your employees closer together, helping you establish and maintain a company culture that boosts productivity, promotes teamwork, and inspires motivation.
Isolated employees tend to feel disassociated, under-valued, and over-stressed. Their performance and productivity can quickly drop.
Bringing Employees Back Safely
Maintaining your company culture and ensuring better employee satisfaction can only be achieved by bringing your employees back to the office in a safe manner.
Redesign Your Office Space
The first thing you should do before inviting your employees back is redesign your office space. You’ll want to ensure that every employee can easily follow the recommended social-distancing measures; and this means providing enough space in the office and using the right furniture.
You’ll need collaborative desks with screen partitions and plenty of free space around each employee.
Make Your Office More Inviting
Empty offices with separated desks, cubicles, and screen partitions can be depressing and demotivating. To make your office more inviting and motivating while still keeping it safe, you’ll need comfortable break rooms and bright chairs and seaters.
Your employees will feel more at ease in well-designed offices with adequate space in their work areas and break areas. They won’t encounter distractions, and they’ll find it easier to focus and be productive.
Focus on Health and Safety
Regardless of your office design, you’ll need to prioritise health and safety. Ensure your employees have everything they need to stay safe – face masks, gloves, hand sanitiser, cleaning agents, and more.
It will not only help your employees relax while working from the office, but it will show them that you’re putting their health and safety first.
Allow for More Flexibility
Finally, you’ll need to give your employees some flexibility. Don’t force everyone to come back to the office at the same time – create schedules and office shifts, have them back in the office just a few times a week, and allow them to keep working from home if it makes them feel safer.
To maintain your company culture, you need to show your employees that you care about them, and the only way to do that is by prioritising their wellbeing.
The Bottom Line
It will take a while before things get back to normal after COVID-19, but it’s still important to show a sense of unity and make every employee a part of your company culture.
Your employees get a stronger sense of belonging when they’re together, all you have to do is ensure they can come together safely and without any risks to their health.