Offices expected to reduce headcounts going into Q4

Offices expected to reduce headcounts going into Q4

Whilst UK companies have enjoyed the slow return to the office since the covid restrictions eased in May, this is set to be reversed as more and more company bosses plan to keep more staff working from home in Q4, it is reported.

With the covid pandemic still ongoing, there appears to be a rise in cases with around 3,000 new cases per day around May when restrictions were eased, to currently around ten times this at 30,000 cases per day.

As offices continue to be filled up, this is only increasing the number of cases, especially with more people commuting on public transport such as buses and trains.

For many firms, the rising cases will see staff going back to working remotely and from their homes, something that they became accustomed to during the first and second lockdowns respectively.

What precautions companies have been taking

Covid cases continue to rise, especially in congested cities such as London and Manchester. The wearing of masks is now voluntary, although there is a strong argument that this should be reintroduced.

Staff of hygienic essential places continue to wear face masks and sometimes plastic gloves, including restaurants, bars and supermarkets.

The timing of staff placements has also been useful, with different work rotas and various employees working in offices on alternate days to keep the natural spreading of people. This involves a hybrid working model, which combines both remote and office working.

Other key additions to the offer to prevent covid from spreading include the use of plastic screens between desks and tables, hand sanitiser at every door entrance and exit and hand wash stations for employees and public places.

Daniel Tannenbaum who runs a online startup magazine, TechRound, commented:

“It has certainly been nice having staff back together in the same room, it is so healthy for team morale and also for collaboration purposes and things have almost started to feel normal again.”

“But with cases back on the rise, it is safer to have people working from home so that we can continue to be productive and enjoy the festive period with our loved ones.”

“When you have to make a call, if one member of staff catches covid and passes it onto the rest of the team, this could wipe out the entire company for around 1 to 2 weeks and this will not be manageable or sustainable as a company.”

“We could certainly continue to have staff working on alternate days and we should be able to have a good Christmas party, ideally outside somewhere!”