KEEPING YOU SAFE | OUR COMMITMENT
Last updated: 5th June 2020
Throughout this challenging period, the safety of our members and our employees has always been our priority. We understand that you need to know in some detail the measures that we have put in place to help keep you safe as you begin to come back to your workspaces. We know that you will expect innovative approaches to a difficult challenge – how to make our building as safe as possible while preserving the unique quality of the working environment that our members expect from us.
These measures will be reviewed regularly to stay up to date with government guidelines, and at present include:
All of our own employees are being fully trained on the measures that we are putting in place and their role in implementing and maintaining them. There have been significant changes to our health and safety guidance and protocols, and every returning employee has been informed of these updates, and those requiring specific training, have received it. This means that the DESKGO team supporting your building are fully equipped to support our members as they transition back to work.
We know that cleanliness and hygiene in your DESKGO offices is a key concern and we have taken a number of important steps to ensure that these concerns are addressed prior to your return. We all know that the cleaning of surfaces reduces infection risk. Prior to your return to our building we have ensured that all common areas and members’ offices have been deep cleaned. On an ongoing basis we have put in place a stringent cleaning regime in all common areas in our buildings.
- Hand sanitiser stations will be available at entrances, reception and communal parts of our building.
- We have implemented an improved cleaning specification within high-traffic and high-risk areas, including all communal areas and kitchen area.
- Shared spaces will have antibacterial wipes and cleaning materials available for you to use.
- We will implement enhanced communal area sanitisations in our communal areas on a regular basis.
Monitoring and reporting
We have a responsibility to keep everyone safe, and part of this means monitoring the health of our employees. Our team will report to us if they have developed any COVID-19 symptoms while away from work and will self-isolate in line with government guidance. We will pass on the news of a possible infection to those members who may have been in contact with the employee concerned and initiate any necessary cleaning procedures.
We are asking all members to report to us if they have experienced any COVID-19 symptoms so that we can include this information in our monitoring and reporting. In line with GDPR regulations, this data will be stored securely and will be destroyed as soon as it becomes unnecessary for us to keep hold of it. We will of course respect your right to anonymity in this regard and any potential COVID-19 case will not be identified by name.
We hope it goes without saying that any member who is aware they have COVID-19 symptoms or has been in close contact (for example, in the same household) with someone who is displaying symptoms should self-isolate in line with PHE guidelines, and not return to the DESKGO workspace until they have completed this period of isolation.
Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) is now also becoming a part of our life – and not just in our medical facilities. An appropriate level of PPE helps reduce the risk of infection in the workplace, and we will implement the wearing of PPE by our visitors and contractors in areas where it is appropriate for them to do so.
Although we are not going to require our members to wear PPE, we understand that some of you may want to provide items of PPE for your employees to wear in your offices and potentially on their journeys to and from the office.
Physical distancing measures
Effective physical distancing has been vital in reducing infections so far and we know that you are keen to ensure that we have the right distancing protocols in place before your return. We have worked hard to ensure that physical distancing will be possible in the DESKGO workspace when we open again and have closely followed government guidelines in this regard. There are a number of areas where physical distancing measures have been introduced:
Measures have been put in place to ensure that both our employees, and those entering or visiting our building are as safe as possible.
During this period, we will request that all visitors and members respect physical distancing at reception. There will be signage in place to indicate spacing recommendations and we will expect our members and their guests to abide by them.
Coworking and communal spaces
We will request that all our members respect the 2-metre physical distancing guidance while working from our workspace. In practical terms this means some significant changes in the way they can be used.
Prior to visiting us you will need to make a booking so we can accurately plan for your visit and ensure we have the space ready for your arrival.
The number of available spaces in our coworking areas will be reduced. Our reception team will manage this to ensure the space allocated is appropriate and adhering to the guidelines.
Throughout our areas we will ensure appropriate signposting is very visible. We will be asking you to only use alternate seats to leave space between people.
Meeting Booths will only accommodate one person moving forward.
Although most of our members have access to video and audio-conferencing services at home, it is clear that in some cases nothing can replace physical meetings with clients and other business contacts. Our new meeting room policy aims to address this need while keeping you safe.
Until further notice we have reduced the capacity of our meeting rooms in order to allow users to observe the 2-metre distancing advice effectively.
Where possible, we will automatically upgrade our members to a larger meeting room on booking, free of charge, in order to allow them to meet together safely.
Meeting rooms will be stocked with antibacterial wipes for personal use. We will also be allowing longer change over periods to allow our teams time to clean the room thoroughly and to ensure adequate air flow between each meeting.
Our meeting room drink services will be limited to a bottled water until further notice. Further details of this will be provided by your DESKGO team on your return.
Our coffee shop will be closed until further notice. When it is safe to open we recognise we need to ensure that our users stay safely distanced with restrictions on the number of members and employees who can be in the coffee shop area at any one time. More information will follow once we are preparing to open.
In line with other common areas, our washrooms will be cleaned more frequently. Antibacterial wipes will be available for members to use in order to clean surfaces before and after use. We also kindly ask that our members do not leave any personal possessions in these spaces at this time.
Although it is likely that not everyone will want to return to their offices immediately, we also can see that the distancing measures both within member areas and in the common area may mean that capacity in our building is reduced.
Our emergency procedures have not changed. These will be advised to you as normal upon your visit.
How you can help
KEEPING YOU SAFE | WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP
As you can tell we have been closely following government advice on bringing you back to work safely. We aren’t going to tell members exactly what to do, but we also recognise that you are going to want to work in as safe an environment as possible. Your first point of call in deciding what is safe should be the latest government guidelines which can be found here.
In summary, these guidelines advise the following:
Consider ensuring that the physical distancing measures that we have introduced in the common area of the DESKGO building are implemented This should mean you are:
Allowing and encouraging employees who can work from home to continue, particularly regarding employees who are ‘clinically vulnerable’ or living with someone who is. Relevant employees should be able to stay 2-metres away from others. Guidance can be found here.
You should ensure the best hygiene standards are followed. It is advisable to put the following in place to encourage this:
- Hand sanitisers available in every workspace.
- Anti-bacterial wipes available for employees to clean keyboards, desks, chairs and other points of contact regularly.
Reduce infection risk by reducing commutes to the office. This means encouraging people not to travel during the rush hour unless it’s really necessary, and if possible, making it possible for them to commute on foot or by bicycle
KEEPING YOU SAFE | KEEPING THE LINES OF COMMUNICATION OPEN
At DESKGO we always want to give you to opportunity to tell us what you think, and we listen to our members’ feedback. We will continue to do so throughout this difficult time and will communicate with members to ensure you are updated with regards to the service we are providing. We will continually speak with our members via our portfolio management team to obtain feedback and understand if there are any concerns that are not being addressed.