Office space

Transitioning back to the office: where to from here?

Brooke Wedgwood

3 minutes read time

June 23, 2021

It is predicted that more than half of Americans, roughly 53%, are expected to return to the workplace full time within the next six months encouraged by the desire for daily human interaction, the need to reconnect with clients and stakeholders, and employers’ requirements.

However, in the ever-changing world that we are now experiencing due to the pandemic, it is clear that appropriate measures need to be taken to ensure the safety of all employees in the workplace. Brivo, a company which provides cloud-based access control and video surveillance products, collaborated with Whosonlocation to conduct a  ‘2021 Return to the Office’ survey which voiced the concerns people possessed including the need for increased vigilance for office hygiene (including protective measures), tools to ensure proximity among workers, and the tracing of all interactions that take place within the office.

59% of survey respondents indicated that they have worries to return to the office, and acknowledged the measures that could be taken to combat these. So what was indicated? 

Temperature scanning & mask detection

The temperature scanning method was most favored among survey respondents with 49% indicating this as their preferred solution within the workplace. Nonetheless, it needs to be understood that often this method only has value in specific contexts, with fever symptoms being far from universal among people who become infected with the virus. Another solution that arose throughout the survey was mask detection when entering the workplace to limit exposure, however, a mask alone is not guaranteed to stop infections.

Limiting numbers on-site

39% of individuals also mentioned that limiting the number of people on-site at their respective offices would give them confidence in returning, ensuring that physical distancing could take place at all times throughout the workday. 

Touchless door entry

Limiting the number of hand-to-door interactions also trended within survey responses, a simple yet effective approach to limit the transmission of the virus. 

Digital proof of vaccination

Another suggestion from the respondents was the idea of visitors and contractors supplying a digital proof of their vaccine before entering the workplace to ensure the highest level of safety. This easy requirement will put employees at ease, reinforcing that safety is top priority. 

CEO of Curion, a Consumer Insights company, voiced that “what we are really missing is that creativity, and that spontaneity and the ingenuity and talking to your teammates face-to-face. The whole creativity has kind of been gutted without people being together. I’ve seen a big cultural effect of connecting to your co-workers.” Returning to the workplace will help employees to reconnect and collaborate. 

Part two of this series focuses on the changing workplace and the need for social interaction between employees. Follow along to hear how Whosonlocation can help your company.

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