June 10, 2021 – Going Back to the Office

Breakout Room Notes

What’s currently happening and practices that are working

  • Employers need to stay flexible to employees’ needs
  • Employees/employers need to stay flexible about volunteers’/youth’s/familes’ needs
  • Employees need to BE flexible and communicative with their own/their colleagues needs
  • Create a rotation so IF your office needs to be open – staff share the load of who ‘covers’ the office
  • Allow for staff/volunteers to BE hesitant about returning to the office and listen to their needs.
  • Be VERY CLEAR about why you need to be in the office…and WHAT parts of the job(s) need to be in the done in the office.
  • Create opportunities to meet outside (and include youth/family/mentors too)
  • Team of five has a constant group text – send changes in schedules through there
  • At 50% capacity: team comes in two days a week; assigned group days and use “COVID calendar” to see who is at the office
    • Starting July 6 going to 100% capacity but will still use calendar to see who is in. Continue with flexibility to work from home. 
  • Have acknowledgement and release of liability for any public health emergency (all volunteers sign this before they come back in)
  • QR code for screening upon entry into building
  • Wrote out document of COVID protocols from school and required people to read and sign if they wanted to be on campus

Challenges/Remaining Questions:

  • There is a fine line and a very difficult transition from ‘being in the office is optional’ vs. ‘being in the office is mandatory.’ This continues to be one of the biggest issue for all orgs…but it’s especially difficult when there seems to be different perspectives about this being a priority between leadership and staff.
  • It is difficult for us to know when/where to actually be in-person when doing youth and mentor recruitment
  • This is especially tricky not knowing if/when programs will get access to students in schools/centers/etc.
  • Training/onboarding new staff – how and when to do this virtually vs. in-person. Similarly – when crafting new roles or refilling staff roles – how to balance the need to be hybrid in each of the job descriptions/duties…and also find out during interviewing how potential candidates feel about and value in-person vs. hybrid work.
  • Everyone (including mentors) have a different idea of what is safe
  • Different sites/counties have different restrictions and policies
  • Transportation – how are people handling it?
    • Answer: Vehicles at 50% capacity (15 passenger van) and masks
    • Answer: Mentors use their personal vehicles – honor system (have high vaccination rate in county)
  • How are you handling vaccination?
    • Not collecting vaccination records for staff so won’t do it with volunteers
    • Trusting people if they say they are; if they’re not, sending them home with at home tests; people have been transparent
    • Trying to honor confidentiality; allowing people to make personal choices; protecting people
    • Because kids aren’t able to get vaccinated yet, requiring vaccination if they want mask off (requiring proof) – priority is safety of kids; kids all have to wear a mask
    • Kids won’t be fully vaccinated; asking all staff to wear masks if inside to set example
  • Is there something saying you couldn’t go to being fully remote?

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