In light of the statement made by President Cyril Ramaphosa on the evening of 15 March 2020, The Workspace is taking decisive action to protect both our members and staff and to ensure minimal disruption to your work environment and routine.
Our goal is to make sure businesses stay in business and that we keep workers employed. Although this is a time to be careful, it’s not a time to panic; it’s the time to stand together.
Our hearts and thoughts go out to the people who have been affected by this unprecedented event and we appreciate the healthcare workers, local communities and governments around the world who are on the front line working to contain this coronavirus.
Please know that we are vigilantly monitoring the COVID-19 situation around the clock and have precautions in place to ensure a healthy environment.
The safety of our members and associates is our top priority. Below is an update on what we are doing, keeping your safety top of mind.
Our response: protecting members during the coronavirus pandemic
Due to the growing threat of infection in South Africa, we are implementing the following procedures for the protection of our members:
- We’re encouraging the use of video conferencing, phone calls, email, and other technologies for all meetings. Boardroom bookings for facilitating this will proceed as usual, and if needed, you will be placed in an empty office should you need a quiet space for your teleconference.
- When face-to-face meetings are unavoidable, we will thoroughly clean our boardroom spaces before and after each appointment.
- The biometric scanners have been disabled to minimise contact; members can now once again make use of their tags.
- Pay points / POS machines will be cleaned after every transaction.
- Additional steps are being taken to ensure the highest levels of hygiene in our kitchen spaces.
- Every branch of The Workspace is undergoing additional cleaning and thorough disinfecting.
- Additional, regular cleaning of frequently touched surfaces such as door handles, printers, etc. will also be taking place.
- Hand sanitiser is being made available throughout each branch.
- Contact with suppliers and vendors will be cut down to a minimum to ensure minimal external persons coming into each branch.
We understand that you need to keep your business afloat and to continue with your day to day work, and we are doing everything in our power to create and clean and safe environment in which to do this.
We will remain open and will assess the situation on a continuous basis and will update all members accordingly.
We’ve always been committed to an exceptional client experience at The Workspace. The coronavirus does not change that.
Everyone plays a role
The Workspace will take all possible measures to ensure the safety of our work environment.
That being said, we must stress that as South Africans united in the response to the pandemic, each individual is responsible for their own personal hygiene and for taking personal behavioural precautions.
Please see how you can help your community, medical workers and police services and try to give messages of hope and inspiration to those around you.
Even with every possible measure taken, The Workspace has limited control over shared facilities – particularly where our branches are located in mixed-use buildings and centres. For this reason, we encourage all members to be mindful of their surroundings and actions.
Avoiding contact with those who may be infected is one of the most effective ways to protect yourself and others from the coronavirus.
Protecting yourself in the work environment
There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19. The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus.
Recommended everyday preventive actions to take:
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Stay home if you become sick or start to show any symptoms.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use the hand sanitiser provided. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
- If COVID-19 starts spreading in your community, anyone with even a mild cough or low-grade fever (37.3 C or more) needs to stay at home (or work from home).
At this time, we are asking all members who have recently travelled into South Africa from high risk countries to self-quarantine for a period of 14 days before returning to any branch of The Workspace.
What to do if you become ill
If you start to feel ill or show any symptoms, please take the following actions:
- Stay at home and self-isolate.
- Call your MD, nearest hospital or The National Institute for Communicable Diseases hotline on 0800 029 999 before you physically present yourself for testing.
- Inform your manager telephonically or electronically.
Please speak to your branch manager should you have any queries or concerns regarding any of the above information. Weekly updates on The Workspace’s response to COVID-19 will be provided.
We recognise that these are unsettling times and we want you to know that your safety and well-being are our first priority.
CEO, The Workspace