The Covid-19 pandemic has had far-reaching implications for many aspects of our lives, regardless of what country we are in. Countries all over the world have realised the gravity of the situation and are changing processes and procedures to account for this.

Leisure air travel has all but disappeared, and social distancing has become the new norm. Restaurants that were packed just 6 months ago are now struggling to survive due to limitations on how many customers they can accommodate, and countless businesses have had to either adapt or close down due to these changes. Organisations have had to improve safety in the workplace in order to adapt. Below are some tips on how to improve office safety during the pandemic.

1) The fewer people, the better

Recent research has shown that the chances of spreading and catching Covid-19 are greatly increased in an indoor area. This means that the most effective way to reduce this risk is to have fewer people in the workplace. Businesses should consider investing in an easy to set up room scheduling system to help organise and track who has been using meeting rooms. Not only is this great for ensuring the facilities are used safely, but if ever an employee tests positive, contract tracing will also be much easier.

2) Wear masks everywhere

Yes, there are many complaints that wearing masks make it difficult to breathe and that they are generally uncomfortable. However, their effectiveness as a safety measure against the virus is clear. There is a minimal chance of the virus spreading if everyone wears a mask. If everyone’s mouths and noses are covered, the risk of spreading and/or catching Covid-19-containing droplets is reduced.

While it is recommended that N95 masks be worn, these are not always readily available. Standard surgical masks will suffice. While other masks or face covers are not as effective, any sort of mask worn can play it’s part.

3) Don’t share equipment

Reducing the amount of common surfaces we come into contact with is an effective way to reduce the spread of the virus. It can survive for up to a day on certain surfaces, so while it is essential to clean these surfaces often and thoroughly, reducing the number of times it is touched can be as effective at stopping the spread. If you have a work computer, don’t let others use it, and don’t use theirs.

4) Ensure adequate ventilation

The more access to fresh air, the better. Enclosed spaces make it easier for the virus to spread, and this is exacerbated when there isn’t adequate ventilation. Consider investing in an air purifier with a HEPA filter (similar to what is used on airplanes) to clean the air, especially in spaces without windows.

5) Conduct regular testing

All the tips above will be for nothing if employees are not tested. Testing is the only definitive way of ensuring those in the workplace are Covid-free.