The world of work may have changed forever, but not everyone wants to stay WFH. Some employers may be embracing hybrid working, but 94% of employees say they’d like to come into the office at least once a week. It seems there’s no substitute for those water-cooler moments.
Whether you’re looking to a hybrid future or your workers can’t wait to get back to their desks, if you’re looking to prepare your office for the return to work post-lockdown, you’ll need to think carefully about how you define your space. How will you signpost traffic flows to observe social distancing? And how will you communicate a message that’s friendly and on-brand?
Navigating the space
Central to any return to the office plan will be how you use the workspace to protect your employees. Protective screens, floor stickers and social distancing posters are some of the strategies you can use to ensure staff navigate the space in the right way.
If you have a one-way system in place, is there clear wayfinding signage to manage the route, especially around bottlenecks like hallways, elevators and staircases? Are there different entrances and exits for meeting rooms and a clear hygiene protocol for cleaning desks? The way you layout your office will be critical when it comes to reassuring teams that might be nervous about returning to the workplace.
Walkthrough their journey from the front door to their desk - what will your employees need to make them feel safe and welcome in the new normal? That could be a warmly worded A-Frame and poster at the door that reminds them that social distancing is in place, or a large format outdoor poster that gets across the message that protecting your teams is paramount.
Whatever social distancing signs you decide to use, make sure that the design is simple and the message clear. If you need extra visibility consider our high impact, black on yellow, social distancing hanging signs.
Establish a sense of community
Returning to the office will be a challenge for some employees, and social distancing looks set to be part of the new normal for quite a while. But the use of social distancing signs and way finding signage can feel oppressive and restrictive. So how can you communicate to your teams in a friendly and reassuring tone that the office is a welcoming space?
Your customer-facing social distancing signs need to look and sound professional. But you may also require a shift in tone for large format signage in your office space. Don’t order staff to wear masks, but invite them to wear one for everyone’s safety and protection. Be polite in the way you ask teams to keep their distance or wash their hands.
By using a friendly and inclusive voice will help your business establish a sense of community. Social distance, mask and basic hygiene rules could be in place for years to come, according to public health experts, so getting buy-in from your teams with well designed social distancing signs will help the transition back to work run much more smoothly.
Focus on your communications strategy
You have a great opportunity to make your social distancing signs part of a wider communications plan designed to enhance your ‘back to the office’ strategy. Positive messaging and instructional signage will have a more significant impact if they’re integrated into a broader communications campaign that lets employees, customers and clients know what social distancing and hygiene measures are being implemented.
Pair up your print assets with communications based on positive and uplifting messaging through email, print media and social channels. All office users should know exactly what to expect when they finally return to their desks.
Boost your brand identity
Want to align your messaging with your brand? Whether you’re designing your own social distancing signs or buying ready printed for convenience, make sure your branding is front and centre.
Bold graphics, the right choice of colours and clever phrasing can all help to centre your branding and communicate your company ethos and culture. Our social distancing signs including large format banners can be printed with your logo to establish your Covid-safe credentials from the moment employees enter the building.
Establish the ‘new normal’ through social distancing signs
How the ‘new normal’ looks in your office will depend on establishing a set of solid social distancing guidelines. But here’s how signage can help:
- In your workspace: highly visible large format posters can communicate new rules through the use of smart design and uplifting messaging.
- In your meeting rooms: using floor graphics to indicate entrances and exits, using roller banners with essential hygiene messages so that face to face meetings can be held safely.
- In your breakout space: ensure everyone gets to re energise and connect safely by using floor stickers and hanging banners to create a safe space or a queuing protocol.
- In the washroom: effective floor spacing, posters to reinforce behavioural change and information on the optimum use of hygiene products will help to keep employees safe in what can be a small and challenging space.
- Hygiene is key: provide supplies of hand sanitiser and disinfectant so staff can clean and go every time they use their desk or visit the washroom. Create posters with hand washing instructions and positive hygiene messaging to reinforce expected behaviours.
The importance of office signs post lockdown
Signage is hands down the most cost-effective way to reinforce the key hygiene and social distancing messages as we move forward into the post-lockdown world. Positive signs with the right design and tone of voice will be an important part of creating a safe office setup as your employees come back to work.
Whether you’re looking for pre-designed signs or you want to supply your own artwork, Display01 can help. When you need a simple design process, quick delivery and great quality we can deliver the social distancing signs you need in Bristol and the South West. Get in touch today to find out how we can help get your office ready for work.