Return to office: How to get it right with video

Eventually, a return to office life will happen.

Most companies, including big fish like Amazon, Facebook, and Apple, have pushed their reopening timelines into 2022. And many will offer hybrid work options when they do return.

But whenever it finally happens, and whatever it looks like, most people will eventually get back to the office at least a few days a week.

As you prepare to bring your own team back, it’s vital that everyone knows the return-to-office plan and that the entire organization is aligned on health and safety strategies for getting together in person.

Unfortunately, it’s no secret that communicating major policies with remote and hybrid teams is a stumbling block…to say the least.

Fortunately, video is here to help.

Try these templates

Ready to get started? We’ve created a package of video templates to help you align your team around their return to the office.

How to communicate your return to office plans with video

It’s important to create a set of return-to-office resources your team can easily digest. Think bite-sized and informative. Your team should also be able to quickly reference back to those resources as they work through the process of returning to the office.

(Read: this is not the time for a 500-word email that gets lost in the inbox.)

Video is the ideal way to share updated plans and policies in a way that’s engaging and memorable. Just a handful of videos forms a knowledge base people can check for an on-the-spot refresher when they need to know the plan or policy.

To keep your return-to-office videos on point, keep these tips in mind:

  • Stick to the major headlines. Use video to drive home the important points. Save the fine print for the written policy and planning documents.

  • Answer the key questions: who, what, where, when, how, and why. Don’t neglect “why.” Nothing frustrates employees more than changes that seem arbitrary, especially around something as hot-topic as a return to the office.

  • Be honest when you don’t have all the answers. There will inevitably be unknown variables. If leadership isn’t certain about something, say so — and state when your team can expect an update.

  • Keep things on brand with video templates. There’s no sense in creating a video from scratch every time. Use branded templates for faster video creation, consistent quality, and a streamlined approval process.

Six must-have video templates for your return to office

Show your team what’s expected as they change out of their pajama bottoms and adjust to working in the office again. These video templates cover all the return-to-office bases.

Return to office policy

A return to office policy video obviously needs to cover the big bases like when the office will reopen, in-office work schedule, updates to the work-from-home policies, and COVID-19 precautions.

However, it’s also important to include some of the standard office policies: parking space policies, info about ID badges, and any other details about working in the office that people might have forgotten over the months of working from home.

The purpose of this video is to tell your team about the plans and policies involved with returning to the office. But it also reduces the friction of returning to in-person work.

Getting back into the office will likely have unforeseen challenges. There’s no need to complicate that with confusion about parking spaces and forgotten employee ID badges. Set all of that straight in your video.

Return to large office policy

This video can be your only return to office policy video or a supplement to your standard policy video. The main difference is that it covers the policies for any special facilities you may have in your office (cafeteria, gym, recreation center, etc.).

It’s wise to make this a separate video from your standard return to office policy video.

Employees will most likely watch your standard return to office policy video before they come into the office. Then they’ll want to know the rules about using the special facilities, if you have them, once they’re actually there.

So it makes sense to have separate videos that address each set of policies. That way people get quick access to the information they need, when they need it.

Office procedures during COVID

Most businesses have some situations that require special COVID procedures in addition to the usual health and safety guidance. Offices that receive a lot of packages, have vending machines, or need to host business visitors are some examples.

It’s important that everyone knows the policies for handling these situations. Otherwise, employees will have to improvise. And that causes issues.

Returning to the office after exposure

Even when we do our best, sometimes COVID exposure still happens. You’ll need to let people know what to do ahead of time and make sure they have a reference to guide them through returning to work after exposure.

Share this video before everyone gets back to the office and make it available to watch as a refresher whenever someone needs it.

Work from home policy

Many companies will maintain some level of hybrid work options, even after their offices reopen. Regardless, it’s wise for all companies to have a work-from-home policy to create flexibility for things like COVID exposures.

A short video gives everyone the key details and updates they need as your team makes the transition.

Remote work attendance policy

Working from home doesn’t always mean “work whenever you want”. Some teams need everyone to be online synchronously. And even work that can be done remotely sometimes needs to be done at certain times.

This video outlines the work schedule expectations for remote and hybrid employees. It’s also a good idea to make one of these videos for each team, if you have multiple teams who work on different schedules.

Announce your return-to-office plans with style (and Biteable Teams)

When it comes to sharing plans and policies with your teams, nothing gets more attention and engagement than video. If you need people to get your messages and remember them, video is your best communication tool.

With Biteable Teams you can create, distribute, and track all your return-to-office videos on one easy-to-use platform. Customizable branded templates keep your message on point and a collaborative workflow makes approvals a snap.

With Biteable Teams, you’ll have your first video in the hands of your employees before you can say “return to work”.

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