This is what coworking spaces look like in Toronto now that they're open again
Coworking spaces were given the go-ahead to reopen in Toronto when the city moved into Stage 3.
After being closed for months and now having been open for a week, most of the coworking spaces in Toronto have figured out how to operate in this new world.
When they were closed they had time to prepare and plan for their reopening and now they’re able to put all those plans in action to offer the safest work environments while still making the spaces enjoyable and accessible.
iQ Offices is perhaps the leader of the pack and have implemented new rules and procedures that incorporate screening, sanitation and social distancing.
According to Kane Willmott, the company's co-founder and CEO, their offices have actually remained open during the pandemic for essential services only but starting July 31, they reopened for non-essential services as part of Stage 3.
"We were shut down for the better part of four months," Willmott told blogTO. "In preparation for reopening, we hired an expert called Get Ready. They specialize in virus containment and advise people on how to create safe spaces."
"We have four locations in Toronto as well as locations across the country," he said. "We did individual audits on all of our spaces."
According to Willmott, iQ Offices surveyed both members and staff about whether they wanted to come back to work and what they were looking for in a shared office space environment.
"Over 90 per cent of people said they want to be in the office at least one day a week or more," Willmott said.
"People want to use our office space but they have concerns. We're trying to see what it takes to create a truly safe workspace," he said.
"We ask questions upon everyone's arrival, we do screening and temperature checks, we installed plexiglass, and we have wristbands that are a different colour every day so we can identify who has been through screening. We also have signage everywhere and have created an extensive Workspace Acclimation Plan."
iQ Offices has also put plexiglass in their spaces so people can be closer together while still remaining safe.
"We have branded directional signage, communication points, and plexiglass," Willmott told blogTO. "We have to look at how we keep everybody safe that still creates a great space in the office — we want to be safe and functional."
"We have implemented masks, temperature screening — an immense level of detail. We really created confidence for people coming to the office."
"The way people work has changed forever - our spaces look different and a lot of these elements are here to stay."