Advance Northumberland Workspace
COVID-19: Revised Operating Procedures
The COVID-19 pandemic necessitates changes to our operational procedures and protocols. All aspects of the revised guidance must be adhered to maintain the safety of our client’s customers and staff. All adjustments have been made to ensure:
- We maintain social distancing of 2m.
- We minimise contact with potentially contaminated surfaces.
- We mitigate the risk of unintentional contact with others, with or without symptoms.
- We adhere to Public Health England (PHE) guidance.
Information for all tenants and staff
Workspace Risk Assessment has been shared with all our tenants and staff. If you have 5 or more employees you should have a completed a formal written risk assessment before returning to work as outlined in the Governments return to work guidance and as we are a shared space we would like you to share this with us.
Health: The spread of COVID-19 can be controlled by a combination of good personal hygiene, cough and sneeze hygiene and physical (social) distancing. All staff must act responsibly and to PHE guidance for the protection of themselves, their colleagues and our customers. Staff, irrespective of role, or seniority, must not attend work in person if they have tested positive for, or displaying symptoms of COVID-19 (a high temperature, a new persistent cough or a loss of smell and or taste), or are within 14 days of the day when a member of their household showed symptoms or confirmed positive for COVID-19. Everyone should follow PHE guidance on self-isolation.
Please inform the Workspace Manager in confidence if you have any incidences of self-isolation due to Covid symptoms or self-isolation due to track and trace. We will need to share this information, but not the company name or identity of any staff members.
COVID-19 Precautions: All individuals should ensure that they follow the steps below:
- Wash hands regularly.
- Wash hands with soap and water; or use alcohol hand sanitiser where available before eating and drinking, and after coughing, sneezing and going to the toilet.
- Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth.
- Do not share equipment.
- Cover the nose and mouth with a disposable tissue when sneezing, coughing, wiping and blowing the nose. Dispose of all used tissues promptly into a waste bin. Then wash your hands and if facilities are not available, use alcohol-based hand rub. If there are no tissues available, they should cough and sneeze into the crook of their elbow.
- Maintain distances of a minimum of 2 meters from others.
- Avoid shaking hands.
- Avoid locations where people congregate.
The information set out below is specific to the operation of Workspace this has been ordered alphabetically (for ease of recall), not in order of priority or importance.
We must continue to take all possible steps to maintain social distancing and minimise unintentional contact with others or contaminated surfaces. We must therefore continue to control access to our premises. Workspace Reception service will return under a phased return from Monday the 6th of July The first 2 weeks will be 09.00 to 13.00 Monday to Friday. This will be reviewed on a 2 weekly basis. To control the number of people arriving at the Workspace at any one time, we have limited the access to reception to 2 people at any one time. Strict one way systems are in place to allow visitors to come in the main door under social distancing and hygiene guidance and leave via the designated exit door. During Covid 19 it will be a primary function of our reception to control the access to the Workspace and the movement through reception. Please support this by notifying reception in advance of any appointments you may have for that day. Kitchens, tea points, toilets and storage cupboards have been designated 1 person only zones. These will have a “knock before entering sign “as a control mechanism. The toilet doors will have a lock fitted to maintain the user’s safety. Please ensure you respect the social distance of others when negotiating the Workspace corridors, please wait at the end until the other person has accessed their office, kitchen etc.
Break out areas:
All break out areas have been revised under social distancing and excess furniture removed and seating revised. Benches and built in seating have stickers applied advising that this seat is not available under the 2 meter rule.
Cleaning will continue to be outsourced to our contracted cleaning company who will perform an evening clean of the Workspace communal areas from 5.30pm onwards. There will be an additional lunch time clean added to the Workspace between 12.30 and 1.30 daily. Tenants remain responsible for their offices.
As specified in our risk assessment, equipment should not be shared wherever possible. Therefore we will not be able to lend any equipment to tenants.
Fire alarm tests will continue on a weekly basis, as per the existing fire procedure. Note however the fire procedure now sets out a requirement to maintain 2m social distancing at the Assembly Point, and where safe and possible to do so, during the evacuation process. Refer to amended Fire Procedure for each Workspace.
Hot desk services have been suspended until further notice. This will be reviewed against the current Government guidance on a 2 weekly basis.
Journey to work:
If traveling to work by public transport please remind all staff they must adhere to current Government and PHE guidance on social distancing and face coverings.
Remain 1 person zones and all communal equipment, crockery and cutlery should be removed. Following government guidance microwaves and kettles will be removed from communal kitchens. This does not stop you having a kettle in your office. Any food stored in the fridge should be in a sealed air tight container and removed at the end of each day (if not it will be thrown away).
Mail and deliveries:
We will resume distribution of incoming mail to the Workspace and ensure its distribution to tenant’s mail boxes. We have a designated parcel drop zone in reception and you will be informed of all deliveries received prior to 13.00 hrs. Deliveries after 13.00 will still need to be met at the door by the addressee, contact numbers will remain on the front door. There will not be an outgoing mail service until further notice!
Usage has been suspended until further notice at all sites. This will be reviewed against the current Government guidance on a 2 weekly basis.
It is necessary to observe social distancing in the car park and all staff are expected to take a common sense approach and park sensibly and safely for the benefit of all users of the building. Staff must not park in the disabled or electric vehicle parking bays unless there is a genuine need to do so.
Printing visits should be kept to a minimum to limit contamination risk at public based printers each staff member will be expected to use local cleaning equipment after printer use.
Reception is a no waiting zone!
Access is limited to two people at any one time. Perspex screens have been temporarily installed at receptions to protect the Advance staff. All visitors with appointments will be asked to wait in the waiting room to be collected. It will still be necessary to limit both the number of people and time spent in the reception and waiting area. Staff and tenants, should not go to reception for social reasons. If tenants or their staff need to speak to a member of staff at reception, this should be done by telephone or email, not in person. When arriving at the Workspace, staff should travel through the reception area without undue delay and should exit via the alternative route as highlighted. We have installed a strict one way system in reception, please follow the guidelines. There has been an extra sanitiser station installed at the front door, please inform all staff and visitors they are required to sanitise their hands on entering the building.
Only 1 person should access the toilets at any one time. Our wash room facilities are small spaces and make maintaining a distance of 2m challenging, hence the need to restrict usage. All staff and visitors are expected to act with caution and respect for the need to keep a safe distance. A system will be in place to confirm the toilet is occupied. Signage will also be in place to confirm use by one person (Ashington and Wansbeck Workspaces will have locks fitted to the main toilet door of multi occupancy toilet blocks).
To limit the numbers in reception to maintain social distancing guidelines. Visitors to the Workspace should be by appointment only and arrive no earlier than 5 minutes before their appointment. During 09.00 to 13.00 all visitors will be directed to the waiting room and you will be notified of their arrival. Currently after 13.00 all visitors will need to be met at the front door by tenants. Please collect your announced visitors as quickly as possible, unfortunately visitors without an appointment will not be granted access during reception opening hours. To aid in smooth operation can we please ask you to provide us with a daily appointment schedule of expected visitors. Under the Government guidance on track and trace you are also required to keep the contact details of any visitors you have to the Workspace on file for 21 days.
Each workspace has a designated waiting room. Visitors with appointments will be asked to wait here until collected by the company they are visiting. Tenants are expected to collect their visitors immediately space in the waiting rooms are limited.