In just a few months, the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic has greatly influenced the way people live and work. 

Following the coronavirus spread prevention, many non-essential businesses are enforced to shut down and move to remote work setup. As much as humanly possible, those companies with the nature of doing business anywhere with Internet access must continue to implement work-from-home policies, especially when office setup is not really necessary in times of a health crisis. 

But for some companies with proprietary systems, which remote work may not be feasible, keeping the workplace safe and virus-free is a top concern. These organisations, such as banks, marketplaces, and other essentials, have sensitive materials that require employees to be on-site to get their job done. 

Housekeeping can mean so much more in a work setting, where a number of employees are at a higher risk of virus contraction. Hence, all office safety programs should incorporate hygiene and housekeeping tips, in which all workers should play a part. As we navigate this critical pandemic issue, we are giving you these helpful tips in promoting a healthy office culture and environment for all employees. 

Hand Hygiene 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) requests all companies to make optimal hand hygiene a top priority inside the workplace. Make sure that all your employees are aware of washing their hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water. Employers should also increase the availability of disinfecting wipes, tissues, hand sanitizers, and surgical masks for their workers to use.  

Respiratory Etiquette

Encourage everyone to observe respiratory etiquette by simply covering coughs and sneezes either with or without masks on. As an important guideline, post this policy on office walls, bathrooms, hallways, elevators, and pantries to spread awareness and gentle reminders.   

Flexible Work Arrangements for Sick Employees

For employees that show any signs of fever and respiratory illnesses, consider offering flexible work arrangements until they are symptom-free. Make sure to have them checked before they return to work. Aside from ill workers, those at-risk and vulnerable, such as seniors, pregnant women, or anyone with pre-existing illnesses (cancer, diabetes, hypertension, etc) are also encouraged to work from home.

Also, if one of your sick leave protocols requires a medical certificate, consider making revisions for the meantime. Having requirements such as a doctor’s note and other validations for sick leave approval could urge the sick employees to attend their work without realising that they are also putting their workmates in a risky situation.   

Read also: How to Support Employees’ Financial and Emotional Wellbeing Amid COVID-19 

Workplace Cleaning

Everyone in the office should play a part in keeping their workstations clean and sanitised. It doesn’t hurt to wipe your desks and other high-touched surfaces before and after work, especially when it can go a long way in minimising your exposure to infected areas. Pay attention to your workstations, countertops, doorknobs, cords and strings of blinds, switches, and other shared equipment. Provide cleaning agents to each office and make sure everyone is aware of using them. 

If possible, you can also consider updating your office with touch-reducing amenities such as motion sensor lights and double-swinging push doors to reduce bacteria buildup in high-traffic, shared surfaces. 

Provision of Shuttle Services

In most states, where not all employees have their own means of transportation, employers are encouraged to provide their workers with shuttle services or any decent accommodation near the office vicinity to reduce their travel and avoid crowd movement in public transportation areas, where they could be exposed to the virus.  


The health of your employees is very important! By adhering to these protocols, you can confidently help them get through with their work without having to worry about their safety and sanity inside the workplace.