As India begins to reopen her economy, the offices are preparing for a new normal. The impact on the economy due to a much required lockdown is a known phenomenon, and hence to ensure that the economy gains consciousness, the factories and offices are now allowed to function with the guidelines from the state and federal government.
So, how does your office life change? Whether the impact due to lockdown would be severe on commercial real estate? And how would many commercial realtors and Facility Management companies manage to keep the client’s workplace less infectious? This piece deals with reducing your anxiety level and uplifting you to be more confident in your workplace with the new normal post lockdown.
The war with Coronavirus at Workplace
It takes a single infected surface to compromise your workplace, infecting many of your colleagues and employees. We are at war with coronavirus, and it is not just about coronavirus, it is also about the common flu. One infected employee “touches” a common surface in the office infecting the majority of the workforce. This is a regular occurrence every season. However, prohibiting the workplace can never be the solution to combat the menace of spread of infections. Rather let’s educate employees and colleagues because the real battle is fought on the battleground. The purpose of education is to make the human mind “well informed”.
Hence the infected “human touch” at common office areas has to be minimized if not “net zero”. You could probably think of various touch points at your workspace which are commonly touched by every being at the workplace, whether employees, visitors and vendors.
Minimizing the “human touch”
The office of the future or the urban office lifestyle is the “non human touch” office space. Offices are a large gathering of mankind to resolve the complex problems impacting the world. So let’s take a deep breath and jump to some of the ways to adopt for minimizing the “human touch” at commercial real estate.
Majority of your employees hop on to a public transportation system to commute to work. So unfortunately chances of catching infection is always high as a single touch at a public transportation is enough to make her sick. So, what can she do while commuting? Make her aware about the use of sanitizers and masks while travelling. Educate her on the reasons for sanitizing hands every time she touches a surface of the public transport.
Avoid the “sanitizer tunnel” at the office, please. A letter quoting the guidelines of the WHO, issued by the office of the Director, Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Chennai on April 11, says that “Disinfection tunnels will create a false sense of security and people may be diverted from handwash to Disinfection tunnel’’.
What’s the first thing your employees do when they walk their way in the offices? Well, they mark their attendance by the touch of the finger. Here start your “non human touch” workplace. Replace your biometric attendance system with the made in India “non human touch” attendance system. Your secured and highly confidential premise might be locked with a finger biometric system right? Get made in India “non human touch” access control system. The coffee machines, the Photocopier, the door knobs, the microwave, the cookie jar are a few of the top hotspots of the virus. Of course, the coffee machines, the photocopiers, the microwaves can be contactless to be non contagious. However, what do you do with a cookie jar and door knobs? How about ringing the bell? Every 20 minutes for 20 seconds ask employees to wash their hands and / or sanitize their hands.
Remember the battle is always fought on the battlefield. So the best way to minimize the probability of infection at the workplace starts with a contactless attendance system, followed by hand washing every 20 minutes for 20 seconds and educating employees about the benefits of health hygiene.
If you succeed in reducing the “human touch”, your office would be a safer place to work. A virus-free office is my wish for you.
(By Diksha Deo, Founder & CEO, INCUBSENCE)