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COVID-19 Workplace Health Screening Questions

By Nai Kanell
Vice President of Marketing
SpaceIQ

Whether your workplace is essential or is only now resuming operation after a state-mandated shutdown, workplace concerns about coronavirus remain high. The more in-house employees you have, the more concern there is about transmission. For employers and employees alike, this concern is valid. It’s why every workplace needs clear protocols for COVID-19 workplace health screening.

The good news is screening employees for coronavirus is as simple as asking a few questions. We know enough about the virus and its symptoms to make smart decisions when welcoming employees back to the workplace… or asking them to stay home. Use the following questions to put together a simple, yet effective, self-screening process to protect your workplace and employees. Use this screening process every day—regardless of how many employees you’re welcoming back to work.

In the past 24 hours, have you experienced X?

Hallmark symptoms of coronavirus are easy to spot—especially when they occur in tandem. Ask employees to perform a self-check before they come to work each day and gauge a yes or no answer about any of the following symptoms:

  • A fever of 100°F or higher
  • A subjective fever (felt feverish)
  • Cough (excluding known conditions like COPD)
  • Shortness of breath (excluding known conditions like asthma)
  • Sore or swollen throat
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Anosmia (loss of smell)

If they’ve developed any of these symptoms within the last 24 hours, urge employees to stay home. Fever, combined with throat tightness or trouble breathing, warrants immediate medical attention. Instruct employees to visit their primary care physician as soon as possible and stay isolated until they can.

As you ask employees to assess themselves each day, also be aware of psychosomatic symptoms. There’s a difference between general lethargy on a Monday and feeling feverish. Encourage employees to assess their symptoms through a quantifiable lens—use a thermometer, document a cough, feel swollen glands, etc. If they feel symptoms warrant staying home, make sure they seek medical attention. Employers need to trust employees to act in the best interests of their health and the health of others.

What’s your current temperature?

The simplest way to make a decision about coming into work is for employees to take their temperature each day. A normal range is anything less than 100°F; above 100°F is cause for concern. Use this threshold as a clear decision-maker for whether to come to work or stay home.

Advise employees on how to properly take their temperature, and to take multiple readings for accuracy. Both oral and ear thermometers are acceptable methods of gauging temperature. Provide simple instructions for both.

  • Wait at least 30 minutes after eating or drinking to take temperature
  • Insert thermometer into ear or place under the tongue
  • Wait until thermometer beeps with a clear reading
  • Record temperature, wait two minutes, then repeat
  • Repeat 2-3 times to get an accurate reading

Employees don’t need to provide any record or log of their temperature for employers. They should simply be aware that feverish readings are cause to stay home and, if temperatures reach 102°F or more, they should seek medical attention.

Have you traveled recently?

With current travel restrictions and state lockdowns, this question is easy for many to answer. It’s unlikely they’ve traveled within the country, let alone internationally. That said, international travel for work is required of some individuals. If your company has any employees traveling abroad, this question becomes pertinent.

In accordance with CDC guidelines, anyone returning from international travel should self-quarantine for 14 days. This includes routine temperature checks. It’s best for employers to mandate work-from-home for these individuals, regardless of how they feel.

Have you had contact with anyone who tested positive for COVID-19?

Employees should avoid coming to work if they’ve had contact with anyone who’s tested positive for COVID-19—even if they themselves don’t test positive. As researchers learn more about the virus’s incubation period, it’s recommended you treat possible transmission like a positive diagnosis until proven otherwise by time. Tests can yield false negatives.

Before returning to work, employees should be at least 72 hours removed from contact, with multiple negative tests, and no symptoms. Many employers will want to wait a full week to be absolutely sure.

Simple questions lead to important answers

As they answer these self-screening questions before work each day, employees will feel a sense of calm. Not only will a self-screening reassure them of their own health, it shows them you as an employer have a preventive mindset.

In addition to self-screening protocols, be sure to create processes for employees who answer “yes” to any of the screening questions. Whether it’s a remote work arrangement or paid time off through the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), next steps should be clear and decisive. This proactive stance will keep your workplace safe and your employees calm and confident.

Keep Reading: SpaceIQ’s COVID-19 Resource Page

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Facility Management KPI Examples

By Reagan Nickl
Director of Professional Services
SpaceIQ

Did we meet our monthly sales goal last month? Is our current ad campaign generating expected engagement? How long do customers spend on hold before we pick up and answer their questions? We track and measure success and failure in the workplace through Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). KPIs help develop real goals and meaningful steps to achieve them, and they’re essential in every segment of the business.

Below, we’ll dive into some facility management KPI examples that identify opportunities for workplace success. But first, let’s take a closer look at KPIs themselves and why they’re so integral.

What are KPIs and why track them?

KPIs are like a roadmap that tells us if we’re on track or off-course, or if our goals are even feasible. They’re an important metric across every business unit, from sales, to marketing, to facilities management. KPIs show how short Sales is from their monthly revenue goal. They set the precedent for how many media impressions Marketing will get from its newest ad campaign. KPIs even apply at a personal level, and can show Max how far ahead he is on a specific project.

KPIs focus on the most important aspects of business for a particular group or individual. You’re not going to track sales revenue for your Marketing team because they’re not the ones selling, just like you wouldn’t track average wait time for your Sales department—that’s a Customer Service metric. Identify and track KPIs that are relevant to each business unit to understand how well that business unit is performing.

Usually, departmental KPIs are narrow—focused on explicit goals set for that team. Facility management KPIs are a bit broader and span both people and the building itself, but they’re nonetheless important to track. Here are some sample KPIs for facilities managers that touch both realms.

People-focused KPIs

Facility manager primary KPIs focus on how people interact with the workplace. The primary goal of the workplace is to support the workforce, so it only makes sense! People-focused KPIs look at space occupancy and availability, how happy and/or satisfied employees are, and workforce allocation. Some of the most important KPIs to track include:

  • Space occupancy rates
  • Desk availability
  • NET Promoter Score
  • Workforce distribution

Uptrends on these KPIs indicate that the workplace is functioning as it should. People are happy, they have the right workspaces available to them, and they’re doing work in a productive way. KPIs trending down in this area indicate the workplace doesn’t meet the needs of the people in it. They’re not able to work efficiently or productively, and they’re dissatisfied with the workplace—or worse, the company itself.

Building-focused KPIs

On the flip side of facility management KPIs are building-facing metrics. These KPIs look specifically at the building as an investment. Is it generating positive returns? How does the building serve the needs of the business as an asset? These KPIs track costs, building performance, and maintenance of the investment. Some of the most common include:

  • Work order fulfillment times
  • HVAC and energy costs
  • Total facilities costs
  • Equipment downtime

Facility managers need to track these metrics with intent to continuously improve them. Ask yourself, how does the business benefit from a reduction in equipment downtime? Where can you reallocate bottom-line savings to generate better ROI for the top line? Building-focused KPIs tell facility managers what they need to know about the performance of the building as a physical investment.

Use KPIs to set actionable goals

Facility management KPIs represent the aspects of the job that matter most—those with the biggest impact on the workplace and the people in it. It’s not enough to just measure them; you also need to improve upon them. For example:

Right now, 23% of employees are remote. We want to increase this to 45% over the next 12 months, while accounting for new job growth in that time. 

Over the last six months the average response time for routine building repairs and maintenance was three days. We want this to be two or fewer days in Q3 and beyond.

KPIs don’t force a solution—they connect the dots between data and strategy, providing one to facilitate the other. You might buy coworking memberships for the employees you intend to transition to remote work, or staff another person to the maintenance department to expedite work order fulfillment. It’s not how you improve your KPIs, so much as that you continue to hold yourself to them.

The more you know, the more you grow

KPIs are a drilled-down way to look at fundamental aspects of business—the ones important to its success. Tracking facility management KPIs is the simplest way to hold the workplace to its highest standards, to facilitate success within it. There are infinite ways to reach your goals and meet your metrics, and what matters is that you hold yourself to these standards.

KPIs will tell you when you fall short of the ideal and where there’s room for improvement. Pay attention to them!

Keep Reading: How to Select FM Software