Businesses around the world were recently forced to drastically change their operations overnight due to the outbreak of the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). As a coworking space, we have been forced to make many changes to our daily operations. Like everyone around the world, we had to change our general behaviour. This affected the way we work as a team as well as the way we interact with our members.
United Co. is continuing to provide workspace to current members, nearby businesses and individuals who are looking for a suitable place and safe place to continue their work the best they can during these challenging times. We will stay open as long as we are permitted and it is safe to do so. In order to do this, we have made some physical and operational changes.
Measures we are taking to avoid the spread of Coronavirus in our coworking space
- We doubled down on cleaning and make sure high traffic areas are cleaned regularly throughout the day.
- Hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes are available to members in strategic places throughout the building.
- We have spaced out tables in our coworking and communal spaces in line with physical distancing guidelines.
- We provide larger meeting room spaces, in order to help organisations host physical meetings or video conferences to connect with interstate or overseas teams. Our event space, which is usually set-up for conferences and seminars, has now been set-up as a boardroom to be able to host larger groups for meetings.
- On-site car parking is available at a discounted rate to help those who want to avoid taking public transport.
- We opened empty offices to members who wish to space out or separate their teams to help with social and physical distancing.
- Posters and notices have been placed around the space to remind members to practice good hygiene, keep 1.5 meters distance and refrain from activities like shaking hands. In addition, members receive regular newsletters updating them on changes in operations, advice from authorities and links to reliable sources of information.
- With regret, we have had to close our gym and wellness studio as well as pause all community events. We do encourage our members to keep connecting through virtual channels.
- Our cafe Mr. Huxley, like many other hospitality businesses, had to temporarily close its doors.
We are reviewing how we do things on a daily basis in line with the latest recommendations from government and health organisations. We are actively looking at ways to help and support our coworking community through this tough time. United Co. has built a strong community since it’s opening in 2018. Now more than ever it is important that we help those around us and bound together. We are forced to distance ourselves physically, but we should not isolate ourselves socially. Catch up with your coworkers online, whether it is to collaborate or motivate each other or simply because you miss the daily social interaction at the coffee machine. While many of us have adapted to working from home it is important to maintain those social connections that we have built, we may just have to connect differently.
Advice and updates on COVID-19
The Australian Government has released an official app with the information you need to know about Coronavirus as well a WhatsApp channel. To download the app search “Coronavirus Australia” in the Apple App Store and on Google Play.
For more information about COVID-19 please visit the websites below for up to date and reliable advice.
For news about the development of the Coronavirus in Australia visit the website of the Department of Health.
If you need information about the development of COVID-19 in Victoria or want to check if your business is currently allowed to operate check this dedicated website from the Victorian Government coronavirus.vic.gov.au.
For advice on how to protect yourself, your relatives and the people around you from the Coronavirus visit the website of the World Health Organisation.
If you are feeling unwell or need support
During these times, if you are feeling unwell in any way it is best to stay at home and self-isolate until you feel better. This is the only way to help protect the people around you and the wider community.
Symptoms of COVID-19 range from mild illness to pneumonia. Some people will recover easily, and others may get very sick very quickly. People with Coronavirus may experience symptoms like fever, flu-like symptoms such as coughing, sore throat and fatigue and shortness of breath.
If you do suspect that you may have Coronavirus use the symptom checker provided by the Australian Department of Health. To seek medical attention for symptoms relating to Coronavirus call the National Coronavirus Helpline on 1800 020 080.
During this time of isolation, you may find yourself struggling mentally and experience feelings of loneliness or anxiety. If you or anyone you know needs help, the following organisations can be contacted:
- Lifeline on 13 11 14
- 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732
- Safe Steps on 1800 015 188
- Kids Helpline on 1800 551 800
- MensLine Australia on 1300 789 978
- Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467
- Beyond Blue on 1300 224 636
- Headspace on 1800 650 890
- ReachOut at au.reachout.com
Adapting to a new way of working
Many businesses have sent their employees to work from home, but you may find it challenging to work from home if you don’t have a dedicated quiet space to work. Your local coworking space may be able to help you with a safe and suitable workspace without the need to travel far or use public transport. If you are in Fitzroy, Collingwood or a nearby suburb and find it challenging to work from home, we encourage you to reach out to us. We offer day passes and flexible memberships that may benefit you during this turbulent time.
If you are running a business and are worried about business continuity under these challenging circumstances, it may be worth considering a virtual office membership. We can help you with mail handling and phone answering services.
To speak to our team, contact us on 03 7018 8887 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. We would be happy to discuss how we can help you and your business.