Businesses should devise a multi-faceted and phased approach to the workforce’s re-entry to the workplace, which takes into account guidance, regulations, and orders issued by federal, state and local governments and agencies, including the World Health Organization (WHO), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and The White House.
Consider establishing a cross-functional COVID-19 Task Force, with representatives from across the organization, including human resources, legal, and facility operations, to prepare and monitor the re-entry of the workforce, as well as the evolving circumstances surrounding COVID-19. This checklist provides an overview of some of the key considerations the COVID-19 Task Force should consider when developing the organization’s plan for the workforce’s re-entry to the workplace.
This is general guidance only. Be sure to consult legal counsel, public health information, and all applicable executive orders, as required policies and practices may vary based on state and local laws.
Prepare the Physical Workspace
- Establish cleaning protocols that adhere to CDC guidance.
- Post building cleaning protocols throughout the workplace.
- Post CDC recommended personal hygiene protocols reminders.
- Identify and consider hands-free alternatives to high-touch areas, such as revolving doors, knobs, light switches and plumbing fixtures.
- Conduct maintenance and updates to HVAC and building facilities by, for example, increasing ventilation and installing high-efficiency air filters.
- Modify workspaces to promote social distancing by, for example, creating smaller offices to allow for additional offices or installing higher walls between cubicles or other physical barriers between workspaces, such as clear plastic sneeze guards.
- Close or limit access to common areas, such as gyms, kitchens and cafeterias, or reconfigure to promote social distancing.
- Provide and maintain supply of personal protective equipment (PPE), sanitizers, and disinfectant wipes for employees and building guests.
- Restrict the total number of permitted building occupants in order to allow for social distancing.
- Place decals and space demarcations in common areas, such as the lobby, to note social distancing requirements and traffic flow patterns.
- Reconfigure meeting rooms to promote social distancing.
- Control all points of entry for staff, guests, and vendors.
- Remove and discourage the use of shared tools, such as remote controls and conference room phones.
- Establish and communicate building rules with employees and building guests.