Coffee mug

Create a working environment

Get dressed as though you were leaving your house and try to have a workstation that is set up in a way that means that you are comfortable and protecting your back. Having a location specifically set up for work helps to distinguish it from your home space and personal time.

Organise your day

It is good to have a structure for your day and a plan for what you want to achieve by the end of it. Some may find it better to have protected time where they work on things individually and keep other times for collaborative work and calls etc to avoid interruptions. Keep your calendar up to date so others can see when you are busy.

Check in with team members

Line managers should check-in with team members on a regular basis about what progress they are making, ideally as part of your regular one-to-one catch-ups which should continue as well as any other regular meetings that can take place remotely. Everyone should be clear about the outcomes that are expected of them and feedback needs to be given if there are any concerns about this.

Take breaks

You should have regular breaks from your screen as normal and you should not feel guilty about getting up to stretch your legs, making a drink or going to the toilet! Use the time to get some fresh air if possible or speak to those who may be with you in your home. You can also set times to have “virtual tea breaks” with colleagues when you can have a chat as if you were together.

Eat healthy food

Have a lunch break and eat healthy food! Again, you can also have a virtual lunch break with colleagues and eat and chat together using technology like Teams.

Do something active

Try to build some physical activity into the day. Not commuting to work will significantly reduce the time you would be standing/walking and you should aim to replace that moving time and ideally do even more!

Keep in touch with your team

Use the technology available to keep connected. Teams has an instant chat option which can be used to have those conversations or ask questions that are normal in the office environment. Social isolation is a real risk and we can try and take steps to reduce the chances of this having a negative impact on ourselves and our colleagues.

Have a set finish time

Have a set finish time for the day and try not to let work bleed into home life.

Mental health and wellbeing is important

Recognise that your mental health and wellbeing is important. Managers should be mindful that staff may be worried about catching the virus and they will listen to concerns, check your stress levels and offer support so be open. The College is publishing as much information as possible via dedicated pages and provides a range of practical and emotional support via the employee assistance providers CIC.

Be kind

Try not to watch too much news or listen to opinions and memes on social media as this can increase anxiety rather than help. Be kind to yourselves and to others.