Leaders Launch Guidance

The Adecco Group, Randstad NV and ManpowerGroup advise for a safe return to work

The Adecco Group, Randstad NV and ManpowerGroup, industry leaders in the global human resources sector, have today launched the UK and Ireland Safely Back to Work guide. It aims to encourage a safe return to work following the lockdown imposed to tackle COVID-19, which is impacting nearly 2.7 billion workers worldwide, approximately 81% of the global workforce.

The guide shares an overview of collected measures and best practice health and safety protocols, that can be used to support a safe return to workplaces throughout the UK and Ireland.

Research conducted by the Adecco Group, of 251 UK HR decision makers, revealed that an encouraging 71% of UK businesses have already begun preparing for the end of lockdown. However, only 57% of those businesses have started putting a plan of action in place, and just 45% have already been implementing specific steps.

The UK and Ireland Safely Back to Work guide highlights COVID-19 protocols across five sectors, including: Transport & Logistics, Automotive, Manufacturing & Life Science, Construction and Food.

Some recommendations include:

  • Doors to remain open where possible, to limit the need to touch door frames, handles, push buttons etc.
  • Cleaners should update a ‘confirmation of cleaning’ list in a prominent location upon completion of cleaning
  • Good supply of handwipes throughout the workplace
  • Staggered start and finish times to help enforce social distancing

Alex Fleming, President and Country Head, the Adecco Group UK and Ireland, commented: “Getting people back to work safely, securely and when the time is right is our ultimate end goal. These unparalleled times have completely transformed the labour market as we once knew it, so new approaches to creating safe workplaces are integral. This global alliance has been created to help lead the way in reshaping the working landscape for the better, and all businesses now need to take cohesive action to ensure both employers and employees can overcome this challenge and continue to grow, develop and thrive.”

Michael Smith, Managing Director, RSR EMEA & CEO, Randstad UK, said: “I was inspired by Jacques Van Den Broek’s [Randstad’s Global CEO] ambitious idea to partner the three largest recruiters in the world with a view to helping all industries get back to work as safely and as quickly as possible. These are strange times and demand new approaches and the alliance of Randstad, the Adecco Group and ManpowerGroup is proving to be an important one for British and Irish business, leading the charge to creating safer workplace environments for us all, as we look for new ways to flourish amidst this crisis. The onus now is on all of us to play our part in this generation’s greatest ever workplace challenge”

Mark Cahill, Managing Director, ManpowerGroup UK and Ireland, said: “We are in the throes of reimagining a new future of work.  The restart will vary by country and industry, and what we know for sure is that everyone will be impacted by the virus.  It was clear that we needed to collaborate with other market leaders on this allied approach. By coming together with the Adecco Group and Randstad, we are putting our people first. We will need to acclimatise gradually to a new working environment, but above all we must maintain unity which is why partnership is so fundamental. Together, we’re embracing business as ‘unusual’ and reshaping the future to create a blueprint that works for everyone – more digital, more connected, more wellbeing-oriented than we ever could have previously imagined.

The UK and Ireland report was developed in consultation with the Government, key industry bodies and employers. The complete version can be found here.


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