A Common Sense Guide to Returning to Work
As several states announce their plans to lessen restrictions and eventually lift shelter-in-place orders, many people are still left with questions on where we go from here, and what the new normal will look like. Considering that our collective go-forward may be far from “normal,” know that Canteen has actively partnered with our clients, collaborated with internal experts and leaned on guidance from global health organizations to predict and mitigate the new reality. We have been operating safely for essential business clients during this pandemic, and we’re confident in our ability to restore service at your location safely and efficiently. Read on to learn more about what to focus on to help ensure a smooth transition.
Focus #1: Transparency and Communication
Despite the increase in digital connectivity tools, remote work and the pandemic in general has left many employees scrambling for more communication when it comes to their companies’ shifting priorities, plans and processes. As companies prepare for employees to return to the office, transparent communication on the timeline, structure, precautions and overall safety associated with this return is imperative. According to Fast Company, transparency is important to build trust and confidence in the organization, as well as to manage misinformation. Blending work life and home life over the past several weeks has forced many of us to connect with colleagues in ways we never have before. As we shift into the next phase of the new workplace, maintaining this transparent level of humanity, active listening, support and safe connection will be key.
Focus #2: Safety and Trust
We know that coming out of this, an emerging, long-term trend will be an even greater focus on safety, whether it’s through physical distancing, health and well-being or even our food supply and packaging. We also know that in the short-term, the safest way to continue serving our clients and consumers begins with our associates. Following guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), we have taken the following measures to ensure the safety of our team, and in turn, our clients:
- PPE including gloves and masks available to all associates
- Daily screenings including temperature checks
- Disinfectants used at every service for high-touch equipment and contact surfaces
- Sanitizer available to all associates
- Increased awareness of personal hygiene such as hand-washing and cough and sneeze etiquette
- Creating safe spaces through social distancing recommendations
Safety protocols for your locations can be adapted in various ways, but trust that Canteen will partner with you to help you recover and restart in the best way to meet your needs. A legacy of innovation that puts customers first has propelled us to quickly mobilize and better meet new demands, such as enhanced pre-packaged meal and snack offerings, contactless equipment solutions across all lines of business or touchless payment options including mobile payment and our Connect & Pay® app. Trust that we are a safe option to nourish and fuel your employees post-COVID.
Focus #3: Respect and Empathy
With so many people working remotely, the past few weeks have really highlighted the shift from the notion of “work-life balance” to “work-life blending.” There has been little delineation between aspects of our professional and personal lives, as evidenced by increased flexibility in work schedules and video conference calls peppered with a family member’s (or even a family pet’s) input. This shift will continue as confidence is restored and we move into the new reality. As companies prepare to bring employees back into the office – no matter the timeline or structure – it will be more important than ever for team members to understand and support each other to help build confidence in the organization, as well as boost morale. In addition to the intangibles of respect and empathy, employers can offer up tangible ways to show they care about employees’ health, safety and overall well-being. According to the ‘Post-COVID Workplace’ guide from our partners at Steelcase, many organizations will need to retrofit office spaces with physical dividers and re-configured layouts to reduce density and accommodate appropriate social distancing. We are offering signage that reminds our clients and consumers to practice good hygiene, limit contact with equipment as much as possible and maintain personal space while collaborating safely in the break room. But do you want to welcome your employees back with something just for them? Order our new welcome back kits for your team, available in three options. All kits are complete with essentials like sanitizing wipes and immunity boosters, in addition to premium selections of chocolates, teas and probiotics. Just submit your information using the request form, and a local Canteen representative will be in touch for next steps.
Every organization’s return to work will be unique, but focusing on elements like transparency, trust and respect will help make that return a bit smoother. For more information on what Canteen is doing specifically, visit our emergency response page.