Article 5 August 2021

A Covid update – returning to the workplace and vaccinations

Dear colleagues,

It’s been great to see so many of you back in our offices – it really is starting to feel like life is going back to normal which is very welcome. Thanks to everyone who completed the short survey – it’s been helpful to know that many of you want to work in an agile way instead of returning to pre-Covid working arrangements.

Since the last time I wrote to you, we’ve had a few questions about this so we’ve created this Q&A about our expectations and safety for colleagues living and working in England which you can also find on mitiepeople.com and will be updated as anything changes.

(If you’re working in Scotland, Wales or NI, the roadmap is a little different so please check your relevant government guidance. If you’re working overseas, you should also continue to follow the government guidance of the country that you live in.)

What’s happening from 31 August 2021?
We expect everyone to go back to their pre-Covid working arrangements where possible no later than 31 August 2021 unless you’ve agreed separate agile working arrangements with your Line Manager. We did say to our Line Managers that we expect colleagues to go into the office at least three days a week. On the other two days, we’ll be flexible as long as Line Managers are supportive, and the needs of our clients, other colleagues and the business can be met.

What if I’m not vaccinated?
The policy applies to all colleagues, including those have not yet been vaccinated, or have chosen not to be vaccinated in line with current Government guidance. We recognise the decision to get vaccinated against Covid is a personal choice but we also know the vaccination programme is playing a big part in limiting the effects of Covid. We therefore strongly encourage you to protect yourself and others by getting fully vaccinated if you haven’t already. More information is available here.

Is my workplace safe?
We’ve worked hard to make sure our offices are safe places to be. We’ve introduced many Covid secure measures like our Luxibel air filters, digital temperature readers and extra cleaning to keep you safe.

What if I have a health condition?
If you need support in returning to the workplace or any adjustments because of health conditions you should ask your Line Manager for support. Don’t forget you or your Line Manager can make a referral to Occupational Health by raising a ticket in AskHR.

Should I go to work if I test positive or am told to self-isolate?
If you get any Covid symptoms, test positive for Covid, or are contacted by NHS Test and Trace, you should follow any self-isolation advice immediately and not go to any Mitie or client sites.

Can I go into work if i’ve come back from overseas?
You should follow any quarantine rules that apply if you are returning from outside of the UK. This will help to keep us all safe.

What should I do if I’m worried about returning to the office?
We understand that some of you are anxious about lockdown easing and returning to offices. Because of this, we’ve been cautious as we’ve reopened our offices. But, the government guidance now is that colleagues no longer need to work from home and can return to work as normal so we want to embrace the many benefits of working together in our offices that we’ve missed. Mind’s website offers some really good advice for dealing with anxiety about lockdown easing.

I look forward to seeing you all back in the office this month. If you’ve not yet spoken with your Line Manager about a return to work or your working arrangements, I would urge you to do so soon.

Best  
Peter Dickinson | Chief of Staff and General Counsel Mitie