August 31st, 2020 | Best Office Furniture
As we slowly ease back to work, everyone has gained a new perspective about things used in shared spaces. We’ll be reaching out for cleaning wipes and disinfectant products even in scenarios we’ve never given a second thought before – like office furniture and equipment.
It’s understandable to feel a little hesitant going back to the office. But with combined efforts, we can make our workspaces healthier and safer for everyone. Whether it’s getting more engaged in maintenance cleaning, or CDC-advised disinfection, office cleaning is a new practice we should all adapt. With the right equipment, a solid plan, and team cooperation, we can make our workplaces a safer place.
This quick office cleaning plan will help you identify the right materials for your new everyday routine, establish a thoughtful workspace cleaning strategy, and implement these policies with the help from your team.
Cleaning or Disinfection?
While it sounds very similar, cleaning and disinfection processes differ in so many ways. Cleaning is for routine health and wellness, which includes washing down surfaces with soap and water. Not only is it effective in removing dirt and dust from surfaces, it can also pick up germs and safely remove them.
Disinfection, on the other hand, kills germs by using chemical processes. CDC recommends disinfection only when a risk is present such as an employee testing positive for COVID-19 or other contagious illness. It doesn’t have to become a part of your regular cleaning routine.
Office managers may decide to do a one-time disinfection before employees go back to work for peace of mind and establish a strict cleaning policy thereafter.
Whether you are doing simple cleaning, deep cleaning, or disinfection, these are the cleaning tools you need:
- Gloves (Latex or Nitrile if anyone in the office is allergic to latex)
- Green Cleaning Products like spray or wipes, or correctly diluted bleach solution
- Trash Bags
- Microfiber Cloths or Paper Towels
- (For Disinfection) Respirator Mask and Protective Gear
Developing an Office Cleaning Plan for Safety and Health
Think about the typical hotspots that can transmit bacteria and viruses such as tables and desks, chair-backs, light switches, countertops, doorknobs, and cabinet pulls and handles. However, office chairs that have fabric or mesh material may be a little more challenging to clean. Switching to chairs with vinyl or leather seating is something that you may want to think about in the long run for a healthier and safer office.
At Arenson Office Furniture, we provide seat options like antimicrobial vinyl, which comes with molded foam for added comfort and longer lifespan.
Also consider high traffic areas like front desk and reception areas, kitchen and break rooms, bathrooms, conference rooms and meeting rooms, mail and resource rooms. Minimize touchpoints by incorporating controls and switches that are triggered with a simple gesture like a hand wave.
Assign each employee with their own storage and lockers so that personal items don’t get mixed up. Don’t forget office supplies! Instead of sharing, equip each desk drawer with their own staplers, tape dispensers, and pen-cups.
Following a regular cleaning schedule is the best way to maintain hygiene and safety at the workspace. Though it’s not required to have a fixed cleaning schedule, encouraging daily practice of cleaning high-touch areas, deep cleaning your chairs, windows and carpets, and sanitizing surfaces can foster a healthy work environment year-round.
Don’t Forget about Social Distancing
For the first few weeks of our return to work, keeping distance comes natural. However, keep in mind that humans are innately social creatures. Solid communication plans can help the staff ease into the new normal and still be mindful of important health concerns.
Here’s what employers can do to implement social distancing:
- Create a seat plan. Plot which seats can be used according to average office capacity.
- Keep track of which desks are used more often than others.
- Use adjustable booking policies. Restrict access to book certain desks and clearly display what is and isn’t available to their team.
- Stagger the team’s schedule throughout the week or implement an alternate schedule. Allow some flexibility by implementing remote work policies.
Here’s where your staff can take part in social distancing:
- Being aware and honest about your physical health is the best way to reduce the spread of any virus.
- Wear a mask any time 6 feet physical distancing is not possible like in conference rooms or break rooms.
- Use your own resources. Consider bringing personal office accessories. Accessories like a computer mouse are easy to pack away in your bag and disinfect.
Creating an office cleaning plan and covering all necessary areas is the first step in promoting a healthier, cleaner office environment. It also helps ensure your employees that you care about their safety and they are valued in the company. Make healthy environments a part of your overall wellness culture in the company.
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