Returning to Work After the COVID-19 Pandemic: A 5-Step Plan
As Massachusetts and New Hampshire starting to open up again, people will gradually begin to go back to working in their offices. In just a few months, best practices and etiquette have changed. These lifestyle changes not only apply to our personal lives, but to the workplace as well.
Many employees and employers are eager to get back to work having sheltered in place since March. It’s important to consider that even though businesses have shut down to the public, they haven’t been shut down to harmful bacteria lurking in the shadows. The threat of an outbreak is relatively low compared to a few months ago; however, it’s still important to take the proper precautions to avoid further illness. Upon returning to work, you’ll want to ensure your office and place of business has had a deep cleaning. This post discusses the areas that need the most attention – the areas that need to be cleaned and disinfected before employees return to work.
5 Places That Need Deep Cleaning in Your Office
For a bacterium or virus to survive and multiply (some estimates say up to 64 million in twelve hours or less), they must have food and a suitable environment. Once they find a spot where they can grow and replicate, they can easily be passed on from person to person through contact via touchpoints. These touchpoints should be disinfected frequently to avoid cross contamination.
Common touchpoints in a business that need attention include:
Doorknobs, light switches, switch plate covers
Door, appliance, and cabinet handles
Handrails, elevator buttons, and TV remotes
Computer screens, mice, phones, and keyboards
All countertops and desks
Alarm displays, visitor kiosks, cash registers, and pin pads
Mopping the floor and wiping down the sink aren’t enough to deep clean this common shared space. Any trace of food or food spackle breeds bacteria. Plus, common touchpoints in the break room increase the risk of spreading illness.
Common breakroom areas to clean and disinfect:
Sink, backsplash, garbage disposal and along with its switch, and faucet handles
All counters and cabinetry
Coffee station – Did you know the coffeemaker is the fifth germiest item in a kitchen?
Appliances – inside and out (including refrigerators and dishwashers)
Water fountains and filtered water tanks – Water fountain spigots often have twice the amount of bacteria as a toilet seat!
Breakroom table and chairs
Contrary to what you might think, the toilet is not as germ ridden as other areas because it’s frequently cleaned and disinfected. The same can be said about the bathroom floor as it is mopped regularly. However, it’s the other parts of the work bathroom that one should be concerned about.
These are the common areas of the bathroom that need a deep cleaning:
Stall doors, handles, and walls
Seat cover dispensers and waste receptacles
Paper towel and soap dispensers
Counters, sink basins, and faucets
Mirrors and backsplashes
High Traffic Areas
Think about the spaces that are frequently used where most people may convene or pass through throughout the day, aside from the breakroom and bathroom.
Common high traffic areas that need disinfecting:
Entrances and Exits – door handles, doors, windows, and parking kiosks
Floors – mopping and scrubbing floors and shampooing carpets
Conference Room – Tables, chairs, refrigerator, coffee station, and AV equipment
Reception Desk & Lobby – Any touch kiosks, shared clipboards, iPads, computer equipment, couches, side tables, coffee and water station
Other common areas:
Does your office have sleeping pods, a mother’s room, small libraries, or private rooms to make phone calls? Make sure to not forget about these areas to wipe down surfaces and vacuum/clean carpeting or other flooring.
Hard-to-reach places and hidden areas will go without cleaning for a long time until the filth is clearly noticeable. However, dirt, grime, and dust accumulate in the creaks and crevices of your office. Because these places are an afterthought during routine cleaning, they tend to welcome unwanted critters like spiders, ants, and rats. Build-up of dust and dander also impacts the air quality in your office.
Deep clean these areas to avoid unwanted bacteria, allergens, and critters from invading your office.
Behind and underneath appliances
Baseboards and floor edges
High corners of ceilings and wall corners
All of the HVAC vents
Blinds, curtains, and windowsills
Tackle Deep Cleaning with Royal Cleaning Services.
You might have already made plans to re-open your office, but it’s not too late to a deep cleaning of your business. For one, now’s the best time to do it. And second, your employees, customers, and clients will understand if you need an extra few days to implement precautionary cleaning measures before reopening.
The team at Royal Cleaning Services is happy to assist with deep cleaning and disinfecting your office in order to create a healthy and safe environment for those returning to work. Everyone will feel more comfortable knowing that you’re making an effort to protect them from further illness. It’s better to err on the side of safety than wish you had after the fact.
Contact Royal Cleaning Services to discuss COVID-19 disinfecting services for your business. We’ll get your business ready for safe operation in almost no time. Book now.