NEWS21 May 2020

Omnicom outlines return to office plan

Covid-19 News UK

US – Omnicom has outlined a three-phased plan and employee guidelines for when the company returns to its offices.

Empty board room

The marketing services group, which includes insight agencies Flamingo and C Space, said in a post on its website: ‘No person will be required to return to the office if they are not comfortable doing so.’

Omnicom is taking a three-phase approach to returning to its offices – phase one being around 25% office occupancy, phase two around 50%, and phase three 100%. The second phase will end when social distancing restrictions have been lifted.

The group did not state when offices would reopen but said this would be based on the advice of government.

As part of the office guidelines, it advised staff not to go to the office if they are feeling unwell and to check their temperature before coming in. Employees are also being encouraged to wear a face mask in the office.

As some Covid-19 restrictions start to ease, businesses have been assessing how to approach their employees’ eventual return to offices, however, for global companies this will be done gradually depending on the location.

Earlier this week, WPP chief executive Mark Read told the company’s employees in a memo that returning to the office would be voluntary and that WPP would ensure that people can be “flexible in how and where they do their work”.

Read said: “In a few markets in Asia and Europe, we are opening offices now and some people are already starting to come back. In others, including London and New York, even when we do open offices we are not currently expecting significant numbers to return before September or October and it may well be later.”

Last week, the MRS released research industry guidelines on returning to workplaces, including face-to-face research.