“It will be bumpy through to Christmas, It may even be bumpy beyond” –
Boris Johnson, The Andrew Marr Show, 4th October 2020
A sobering warning from the Prime Minister that the second wave may take us into 2021 before normality is re-established.
Returning to work in this new environment can be a stark and daunting bridge to cross, with restrictions and limitations set in Government Guidelines it has been vital that all changes have one thing at the heart of the matter. Protecting our clients and staff from COVID-19.
The various barriers and obstacles we faced were staggering, in some cases, like many other businesses, we had to take a big step back and look over every aspect of precautions and procedures for our clients and then face the larger task of implementing them.
Plan, Do, Check, Act.
The simple, yet comprehensive, system, worked on and developed by KeyFM, that we have implemented throughout Key to ensure the safety of our clients and our staff. Although COVID-19 has caused large disruption and displaced workspaces, this ever-changing situation is not new for the role of Facilities Management as we always look to improve and react to the everyday that affects clients and businesses.
The start of lockdown in March seems like a longer time than just 6 months. Since that time, we have re-evaluated the risks and integrated further monitoring methods. On one of our Locations, visitors have their temperature taken with an entry camera which in return flags up any that are unusually high allowing for the staff to take the necessary precautions with that visitor. This helps to cut off risk to other staff within the building at the very start.
Check out Keystone for Smart Building and Smart solutions for returning to work safely.
In other sites, we have implemented social distancing through the entire building and created pathways through the busier sections to avoid bottlenecks of staff. This way social distancing can be maintained, and staff movements and numbers can better be monitored.
Some solutions did not involve new technology or a re-planned workspace, something as simple as turning air conditioning from recycling air to fresh air sources by either altering the centralised air conditioning settings or merely opening a window.
All of these decisions were actioned as a process of Plan, Do, Check and Act.
Phase 1: Plan
Plan is all about risk assessments. Every aspect of your building including the people in it must be taken into consideration when planning to reintegrate them into the workspace.
Phase 2: Do
Do, is implementation.
Applying all aspects of the risk assessments from the plan phase. Communication is key at this stage as you will be introducing new procedures and, in some cases, a whole new method in which your workplace operates onto staff that have already experienced the difficulties of Social Distancing and lockdown.
Phase 3: Check
Check is making sure that phase 2 is working. This is where any trackers and data from the planning stage will be vital. This can be observed if your bottlenecks are occurring in different areas of the building or if access points are to close to work areas.
Phase 4: Act
And then there is Act.
Where any faults from phase 3 can be observed and logged, at which point that data is used for Phase 1, where we loopback. As COVID-19 is not going anywhere anytime soon and the science behind how it transmits and what is effective against it is always growing and adapting. So Key FM has to be the same for our Clients. We adapt to the new information and guidelines and we adapt to the data coming from the workspaces. To make them safer and as efficient as they can be right now.
“Life should not feel normal right now” Nicola Sturgeon. First Minister’s Speech 22nd March 2020
The future right now has far more questions than answers, however, good FM is about adapting to the big or small, the good or bad and the exciting or scary. We cannot control what’s happening in the world, but KeyFM is about controlling the world around you.
– Author: Darren Lloyd