Changing Face of the Workplace as We Emerge From COVID Must Put Technology at the Centre of Our New Safety-Conscious World
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Restrata CEO sets out a 7-Step Plan for ensuring a Covid-safe return to work
After a year that many would like to forget, and coming just over two weeks before Christmas, the past few weeks has seen a surge in good news from a British perspective. With the news emerging from the UK Government that Britain had become the first country to formally approve the rollout of the Prizer and BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine followed by a swift roll out. The signs and the green shoots of optimism for the world to return to a sense of normalcy are starting to appear, and with that news comes a sense of optimism. A sense of optimism that will be welcomed by the business sector that has, for so long, and powered by its entrepreneurial, solution-led instincts, had to work within extreme limitations and ride out this global pandemic.
Whilst we have all faced restrictions and limitations on what we could do to maintain, let alone increase, business during the pandemic, at Restrata, our core mission being the digital transformation of safety and security, we have throughout asked ourselves one question: how can we help?
That is why for the past 10 months we have been a pioneer in helping bring back live sport both in the UK and internationally; a role which led to us handling the COVID-SAFE bio- secure environments to the England cricket test series, relocated Indian Premier League and live fan trials at the Kia Oval. For a British Safety and Security Technology company, we have been proud to deploy our Restrata Platform to play our part in getting sport, that most global of sectors, through Covid-19 as best it can.
For the business sector and other industries, we have also been able to put the Restrata COVID-SAFE Platform to good use, providing social distancing, contact tracing, access restrictions, communications, symptom screening, creating capacity limits and bio-secure bubbles for businesses of all sizes – giving their workforce confidence that, if they can’t work from home then they can do so, safely and securely.
As we continue our fight to defeat Covid, we are hearing more about what this year has meant for ‘working from home’ culture, including its benefits and its limitations; not least with regard to the effect on people’s mental health and their need for social interaction. We are hearing more about the impact that the pandemic might have on companies’ office space and configuration, with a suggested lesser need for desk space and greater need for collaboration & social interactions. One thing is for sure: as a result of Covid, the office of the near future will look different than the office of the recent past.
And it is this changing function of the workplace that gets the Restrata team helping businesses assess what more they can do and how they can deploy technology efficiently to make their workplace fit for a post-Covid world. Whilst randomised testing, hand sanitising stations and regularly sanitising equipment are a welcome step for all businesses to take, utilising technology to manage their changing staff capacities, gather intelligence and keep their workforce safe – all driven and measured by data – are essential to in still the confidence in our people.
Our core mission hasn’t changed, and continues to be about deploying technology and services to enable the protection of your workforce, ensuring we keep those who create, produce, connect and innovate, safe at all times, and the pandemic has been an example of a new risk that rapidally became omnipresent and global, which is why we stepped up.
As we emerge from Covid, albeit at different speeds, worldwide, businesses need to continue to manage Covid-19 with safety and security concerns at the forefront; and, so, below are our seven recommended steps for ensuring a safety first workplace:
- Conduct an assessment of your workplace to implement physical measures needed and asses your maximum capacity.
- Promote regular and thorough hand-washing by employees, contractors and customers
- Promote good respiratory hygiene in the workplace
- Advise employees and contractors to consult national travel advice before going on business trips.
- Brief your employees, contractors and customers that if COVID-19 anyone with even a mild cough or low-grade fever (37.3 C or more) needs to stay at home.
- Provide testing for individuals who may have symptoms and use digital contact tracing to understand where they have been and who they may have been in contact with.
- Implement a digital system to record people’s travel, attendance, close contacts, capacity limits and automated symptom and temperature checks
In my view, technology alone will not solve the problem, but along with the right safety measures, it will empower you and take the guess work out of managing COVID risk in the workplace. We have rapidly deployed the Restrata Platform with COVID SAFE technology for companies within a week or two, and they immediately get the visibility and control they need to understand how the office re-opening is going, and feel in control. If you are managing Covid in the workplace today without technology, the question is why?
One of the reasons could be that you don’t want to invest in something that may only serve you short term. I believe that even in the short term, return on investment can be significant, and by badly managing an outbreak, it could cost hundreds of thousands if not millions of pounds.
However, I understand that a long term benefit beyond Covid needs to be in place and that is why we are confident that the Restrata Platform is a great fit as it was built with workforce safety at the heart. With a multitude of modules and integrations, the platform sits across your organization giving you a unified view of your people and the tools to keep them informed, safe and mobile no matter where they are.
We will continue to invest in the Restrata Platform, as the unified digital platform to manage the safety of you workforce, no matter where they are. Today’s challenge may be COVID, but it is increasingly clear that a long term approach to keeping your people safe & your enterprise pandemic resilient is what the future requires.
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