- Biggest barrier to employees returning to work is their anxiety about COVID-19 health risks
- Compass Group Asia Pacific’s new framework SafeSphereTM supports organisations in getting employees, guests and clients back to enjoying food in the workplace safely and with minimal anxiety
- It is an adaptable and customisable program of food, safety and hygiene solutions to provide assurance and confidence in the workplace
- Developed with independent health, safety and audit specialists to specifically deal with consumer anxiety
- Compass Group Asia Pacific is part of the world’s largest food service provider
“One of the biggest barriers to employees return to work is employee anxiety, with research showing 44% reporting feeling anxious about the prospect of going back to work because of the health risks posed by COVID-19 to them and those close to them. Nearly half of employees are concerned that their employers will bring them back to work before it’s safe. The same number worry about the future of the company they work for and their job specifically,” Mark van Dyck, Regional Managing Director of Compass Group Asia Pacific said today.
Research by US consultants, United Minds, found that while employees trust top public health experts, fewer than one in ten would feel safe returning to the office when only their employer says it’s safe. KRC Research, reported that while nearly 80% of employees are proud of their employers for their responses to COVID-19, the same percent say their employers will need to make changes to protect their health and safety before they feel comfortable returning to work.
“Employers need to address anxiety and these other concerns when bringing people back to work otherwise they won’t return to pre-COVID productivity and engagement. We designed SafeSphere to help address these issues,” says van Dyck.
It is a trademarked framework developed in association with fourteen independent, health, safety and audit specialists across the region that offers assurance on the safety of all interactions with food in the work environment. It uses an operating model with a set of certifiable standards. While each country in Asia Pacific has a set of minimum standards in place for operation, SafeSphere ensures a higher level of consistency and comfort with an already established auditable verification and validation process.
SafeSphere is divided into key four areas:
- Human Health & Hygiene
- Healthy Spaces & Places
- Food Reimagined
- Digital Touch
Solutions under these areas address key anxieties consumers are feeling related to eating outside of their homes, including around social distancing, the hygiene and health of people preparing food and the spaces it is consumed in.
For example, before beginning a shift, our team undergo a double verification of their health before they can start work, we are reducing the need for close contact enabling people to:
- pre-order meals and food
- access packaged ‘Grab & Go’ meal solutions
- or use low touch pick-up or delivery-at-work meal options
and we are deploying cashless transaction capabilities across all relevant client sites. SafeSphere also has the latest in digital tools to relieve anxiety about social distancing including people density tracking to ensure distancing compliance.
Compass Group Asia Pacific operates in ten countries, employing more than 65,000 people serving more than 400 million meals a year at 3,500 sites from Brisbane to Bangalore to Beijing.
Across the Asia Pacific we have seen emerging themes and shifting employee behaviour in different markets through the pandemic. In China we are seeing 80% of workforces back in the office while in other countries some multinationals are planning to continue work from home practices until 2021. We developed SafeSphere so it can be adapted in every market whilst providing a baseline level of assurance, making it a complimentary tool for local teams as they return to the workplace.
In Australia, Compass Group employs more than 10,000 people in 478 locations.
“Café and restaurant environments need to be instantly recognisable as safe spaces to dine and spend time in,” shares Managing Director for Australia Shelley Roberts. “The anxious customer is looking for visible hygiene and safety practices, digital options to reduce contact points and are focussing more on food that helps them stay healthy. Anything less and customers now will take their business elsewhere.”
Mark van Dyck is available for an interview.
PJ Brooks, Compass Group Australia Communications Manager
PH: +61 428 782 318