Returning to Work: A Checklist for a Safe Transition Back to the Workplace

Preparation and Communication Prior to Resuming Work
⬜Begin talking about the return to work in team meetings prior to the event.
⬜ Consider a tiered approach to returning employees including a list of those individuals looking to return immediately and those with concerns.

⬜ Recognize the possible fear involved in returning to work.

⬜ Consider an employee survey to understand concerns and to check the pulse of feelings experienced by employees.

⬜ Communicate in writing to all employees a brief summary of the return to work process and contact information for any employee with questions.

Emotional Considerations

⬜ Recognize and discuss the fears associated with a return to work. Utilize an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) as a useful tool for employees.
⬜ Listen to employees and consider brief feedback surveys or online townhall meetings to understand concerns.
Preparing Your Building and Operations
⬜ Document your plan and steps in writing.
⬜ Work with building ownership regarding initial cleaning plans and ongoing focus on cleaning.
⬜ Take steps to secure additional cleaning supplies and personal disinfectants.
⬜ Consider a local cleaning company to perform deep cleaning and establish a relationship with this company in the event they are needed in the future following a positive COVID-19 test related to individuals who have been onsite.
⬜ Communicate to employees regarding new safeguards and cleaning measures in place along with a call for all employees to be responsible for personal cleaning.
⬜ Confirm with the building owner overall building inspections including maintenance on HVAC and mechanical systems.
⬜ Assess workspaces to assure daily work can be completed while providing the suggested spacing of 6 feet or more.
⬜ Adjust waiting areas and common rooms to provide social distancing.
Maintaining Controlled Access
⬜ Create protocols for daily safety and health checks.
⬜ Consider entry points to your operations and whether there will be mandatory check-ins, communications, temperature checks or work from home guidance with employees experiencing symptoms. Daily questions/interviewing for employees arriving to work in hightraffic or densely populated work areas may also prove effective.
⬜ Consider written steps and protocol regarding entry into the building.
⬜ Control access and interactions in shipping and receiving areas.
⬜ Establish visitor guidance and provide signage and written instructions for visitors.
Clarifying Your Social-Distancing Plan
⬜ Adjust workstations or utilize every other workstation to provide the necessary 6-foot distance between employees.
⬜ Utilize scheduling and shiftwork to decrease the density of employees at work.
⬜ Allow continued telework opportunities for employees whose job will allow remote work.
⬜ Consider foot-traffic patterns in areas where traffic is high.
⬜ Consider employee gathering areas. Use signage and new expectations in these common areas or consider keeping these areas closed during the first phase.
⬜ Consider a company face-mask policy. Some companies have made the masks mandatory, while many have moved forward with a voluntary plan.
Reducing or Eliminating Touch Points and Increasing Cleaning
⬜ Where possible consider keeping doors open to eliminate touch points.
⬜ Close common area drinking fountains temporarily.
⬜ Create a daily cleaning and cleandesk policy.
⬜ Offer ideas to employees regarding a food plan. For instance, if technology allows, use software like Zoom for social activities including lunch and social meetings.
⬜ Obtain volunteers for a CLEAN committee. A group like this can add daily cleaning sessions to your schedule and provided regular, targeted cleaning.
⬜ Continue to allow/provide opportunity to telework, conference call and Zoom meetings.

Privacy Precautions

⬜ Maintain full written documentation regarding the incident.

⬜ Determine and record the last date and time when the person was on the premises.
⬜ Interview the individual to determine the exact path, locations and focus of their travel within the buildings and workspaces.
⬜ Create a detailed list of any other individuals with whom they had close contact or interaction.
⬜ Determine from the individual the first dates of symptoms.
⬜ Seek voluntary submission of COVID19 test results. Trust but verify the information and do not violate HIPAA rules/regulations. Most individuals who have tested positive are willing to voluntarily provide the test results via text message or email.

Privacy Precautions

⬜ Control interior areas of focus with security tape to prevent anyone from passing into an area of risk.
⬜ Immediately clean all external entrances, elevators, parking area doors and touchpoints that may have been used by the person in question
⬜ Contact a local cleaning company to perform deep cleaning of any area where the individual may have spent a longer period of time or lingered.
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