The layouts of offices and working spaces have been revised to ensure the health and safety of their occupants - is this part of the new normal?

Workero’s safe workspaces

Following a two-month period of government-imposed lockdown, it seems we are gradually moving towards a new normal as certain measures are being relaxed for the reopening of the economy.

As part of the deconfinement, stores that closed up shop half-way through March have started opening their doors again, whilst large-scale attractions which are able to guarantee physical distancing, such as museums and zoos, will soon be able to welcome visitors.

Crucially, for some businesses, the permittance to return to work is also included in this reduction of government restrictions. Offices will start to come back to life as workers resettle at their desks in waves, which were fleetingly abandoned in favour of working from home to ‘flatten the curve’. But unlike the rush to clear these buildings, the phase of re-entering will require thoughtfulness.

Health and safety focused spaces

In parallel with this move back to work, the health and safety of employees has shifted to the foreground and has become a key concern for employers globally, as they tentatively approach the lifting of these restrictions.

Commercial real estate service giant CBRE reinstated this, saying that the re-opening of workspaces is particularly challenging as society is dealing with an evolving global public health situation. This has resulted in the demand for new types of expertise, collaboration and communication — and perhaps most significantly, a necessary shift in management and workplace culture.

Most experts agree on the fact that workspace and office space will not only continue to be relevant, but even see an increase in demand and in many cases transform into satellite offices.

We will enter an age where the traditional structures of workspaces will be innovatively re-evaluated to safeguard and ensure the physical, and mental, health of its occupants, for example by extending the existing office space. This is one certainty of the ‘new normal’ everyone seems to agree on: the workspaces we will return to will be very different from the ones we left.

Safety at our HQ

These last few weeks, we have been extensively researching what steps to take and how to implement these measures within our own spaces in a bid to play a leading role within this ‘future of workspaces’ movement.