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Author: Julie Jarvis

Published date: 2020/06


The coronavirus pandemic is, without doubt, one of the toughest situations we’ve had to face both personally and professionally. Now, with lockdown rules lifting at different rates throughout the UK, employers of non-essential workers are beginning to tentatively reopen their doors in a bid to get back to some semblance of normality.  

On 10 May, the prime minister announced the government’s ‘roadmap out of lockdown’ guidelines to support employers in ensuring workplaces are safe for employees to return to in the coming weeks and months. However, the pandemic has presented a multitude of new workforce and safety challenges that employers need to tackle to ensure worker safety and wellbeing both now and into the future, especially if there’s a second spike in the winter months. 

With health a priority, employers must adapt their workplaces to be COVID-secure, but what does this look like? Of course, enhanced cleaning and social distancing protocols are the first aspects that need to be tackled, but there are more far-reaching issues affecting your workforce that need to be addressed. For example: 

  • Will remote working become a permanent fixture? 

  • Do you need to keep tabs on employees with regards to how they travel to and from work? What about where they go on their breaks? 

  • Should workers wear PPE as standard, and should you be providing it? 

  • Are you doing enough to protect your employees’ mental wellbeing? 

  • Does your entire workforce and the way you operate need a complete rethink? 

Help is at hand 

Using up-to-date guidance from the government, health organisations and industry leaders, PRS presents Ensuring a COVID-secure workplace: The ultimate guide for employers, a comprehensive guide to help you ensure all bases are covered. In it, we discuss three key areas: 

1. Practical planning 

The environmental aspects of the workplace and what you need to do to ensure your employees remain safe and spaces are expertly cleaned, as well as a starting point for completing a COVID-secure risk assessment. 

2. Workforce considerations

How you can manage disruptions to your people and maintain (maybe even boost) productivity, including bolstering your contingent strategy, improving communication channels and maintaining social engagement. 

3. The evolution of the workplace 

Looking at the far-reaching effects of the pandemic on the workforce of the future. We cover the rise of remote working practices, the changing role of building services and cleaning professionals, and the redistribution of skills. 

Over the coming weeks, we’ll be running a blog series, where we’ll bring you all of the latest findings and insights on ensuring a COVID-secure workplace. We appreciate that every business will face their own unique challenges but hope the series and its supporting guide will go some way in helping you get back up and running safely.