As lockdown slowly gets eased in the UK, businesses across the country are looking ahead to a time when they can open their doors once more, but there are wide sweeping changes that are needed in businesses for them to get ready to operate without posing a risk to employees and customers. So today we’ll be looking at essential changes businesses will need to make for operating now and after Coronavirus.
Cashless Is King
One of the first changes to come about because of Coronavirus restrictions was a move away from handling cash in retail, this is because as cash gets passed person to person it can harbour germs, bacteria and other unsavoury things.
So a move away from using cash makes a lot of sense, especially with the technology available, with mobile payments and newer credit/debit cards payment can be completely cashless, meaning workers and employees don’t need to have extra interpersonal contact. If going cashless is hard to be, make sure employees handling cash have appropriate PPE such as gloves to minimise contact.
In a post COVID world, being cashless will be a move everyone needs to make eventually, with around 7.4million Brits already living a life without handling cash, so with customers starting to live cashless lives, businesses should follow suit and move with the times to a cashless society.
Goodbye To Open Offices
Let’s be honest, open plan offices have been long overdue a death, with studies showing that open plan offices reduce productivity greatly and employees having a strong dislike for open plan offices, so even without the devastating impact of a global pandemic, the open plan office should have been on the way out.
Open plan offices are good for one thing however: the spread of illness between co workers, with employees in open plan offices taking nearly two thirds more sick leave than employees who don’t work in open plan offices. In a world effected by COVID-19 open plan offices move from a merely being annoying, to being dangerous and irresponsible.
Now, it’s near impossible for every office to change from open plan to private offices/cubicles overnight, so there are things employers can do in the short term to close their open plan, these range from staggering employee shifts to maintain space between workers, hanging cubicle tracks to separate cubicles, or keep employees working from home.
Work From Home Is Here To Stay
While working from home was once seen as a perk of a good, flexible job; Coronavirus and lockdown has thrust work from home into the mainstream and shown that employees can be trusted to work at their normal levels of production from home and the technology is there for working from home to be easy to put in place.
From a business perspective, allowing work from home is a no brainer, not only can you cut down on the cost related to keeping all your employees based in an office, you also expand your potential talent pool. Implementing work from home allows you to look further from your office for talent meaning your business can work even better by getting talented workers who would otherwise be too far away to commute to your office everyday.
Drop Face To Face For Zoom
Meetings will possibly never go back to normal after lockdown is lifted, whilst we’ve always valued face to face contact in meetings in business, the lockdown has showed us that having digital meetings on platforms like Zoom are just as effective.
Critically looking at face to face meetings, there are good reasons why businesses should keep it online, firstly, cramming a bunch of people into a single small room for hours at a time is not quite hygienic. Travel, we’ve all been to meetings that we spend more time travelling to than in the meeting, so it makes sense to save your employees time by cutting out the need for travel.