What businesses must consider as workers return to the office

Jill Wood, managing director of Signum Facilities Management, explains how businesses can ensure the safe return of workers.

Jill wood signum fmWith the removal of some Covid-19 restrictions, employers across the country are getting ready to welcome workers back into the office.

What do businesses need to do?

It’s important to remember the virus has not gone away and there are some essential steps businesses must take to ensure safety in the workplace.

The UK Government’s Health and Safety Executive (HSE) recommends businesses review and update their risk assessment. The workplace controls of adequate ventilation, sufficient cleaning and good hand hygiene remain in place.

Checking the workplace is ventilation compliant is a key task for employers.

Legally, employers must guarantee an adequate supply of fresh air in the workplace and clean air has long been recognised as aiding the health, wellbeing and productivity of workers.

During the pandemic, it is more important than ever to have a good level of ventilation to minimise the risk of spreading the virus.

How to improve ventilation

As employees return to a physical workplace, companies should focus on increasing the supply of fresh air and improving outside circulation.

Natural ventilation can be improved with something as simple as opening windows and doors.

Mechanical ventilation, which includes air conditioning, can also help, providing you understand how the system operates and make sure it is supplying fresh air.

The HSE’s guidance on ventilation and air conditioning includes advice on:

  • Identifying poorly ventilated areas and using CO2 monitors
  • Assessment of fresh air (ventilation)
  • Improving natural ventilation
  • How to improve mechanical ventilation
  • Balancing ventilation with keeping workplace temperatures comfortable
  • Air cleaning and filtration units
  • Ventilation in vehicles

How can we help?

If you’re looking for advice on how to get ready to safely welcome back employees or improve ventilation in your workplace, our experienced team are happy to help.

For more information, please call us on 01302 340 695.

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