As we navigate through the COVID-19 pandemic, organizational leaders are bracing themselves to return employees to the workplace safely, either fully or in a hybrid model. Amid this planning phase, business leaders are faced with a nerve-racking question: “With a mix of employees — partially, fully or entirely not vaccinated — how do I ensure employees are safe to return to the workplace?”
Sixty-seven percent of the total population, as per the Government of Canada, were fully vaccinated as of Sept 13, 2021. With the surging Delta variant reinforcing the 4th wave, employers have to be prepared to react to multiple scenarios. Some organizations may have employees who desire to continue working from home. Other companies may mandate that all employees return to the workplace, and some might require essential workers to continue going into the workplace while others work from home, or they may adopt a scheduled hybrid model with workers alternating between planned on-site and work-from-home days.
Organizations must return to the workplace with the ‘new normal’ and business leaders need to decide now what reopening looks like for them in terms of people, processes and technology. Organizations need to go beyond increased protocols for social distancing, regular sanitization and wearing masks by seriously considering implementation of a Rapid Screening Solution.
Why should businesses implement the Microsoft Rapid Screening Solution?
- To provide an extra layer of protection for employees against COVID-19 exposure.
- To help safely reopen the workplace and reignite the Canadian economy.
- To reduce the likelihood of a shut down due to an outbreak.
Cognizant Microsoft Business Group (MBG) is working with the Creative Destruction Lab (CDL) Rapid Screening Consortium to deliver the Microsoft Rapid Screening Solution to help organizations return to the workplace safely and with confidence.
“People in workplaces are at the greatest risk of being infected with COVID-19. Regular rapid screening adds an extra layer of protection for employees against COVID-19 exposure and I’m pleased that we’ve been able to develop a simple, free program for Canadian organizations to set up rapid screening in their workplace. 500,000+ rapid screens have been performed with 500+ participating organizations across 8 provinces in Canada.”
– Sonia Sennik, Executive Director, CDL Rapid Screening Consortium
According to the Financial Post, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) reported that nearly two-thirds (63%) of small businesses would consider rapid tests if it meant they could remain open.
How does the Microsoft Rapid Screening Solution work?
The Microsoft Rapid Screening Solution will allow Health and Safety Officers to administer Rapid Antigen Screening tests in the office and record results on an intuitive screening app. Alternatively, employees can take the test from the comfort of their home and record their results through an employee app. In either scenario, test results are available in less than 15 minutes. Based on the results, employees can prepare to go to work or isolate accordingly. The Cognizant MBG can partner with you to configure the best option for your organization.
This solution also allows various stakeholders such as executive leaders and their respective return to workplace task forces to have visibility across the reopening scenario via simple Microsoft Power BI dashboards so they can make prompt decisions in response to the evolving pandemic.
For example, Facility Managers will be able to able to access insights to avoid an outbreak and adjust operating hours as necessary. Built to scale, the solution will work whether you are reopening a single office, multiple manufacturing plants or hundreds of office locations across the country. In addition, this pre-built solution using Microsoft Azure and Power Platform can be configured, customized and deployed within weeks.
“At Microsoft, we recognize that it’s critical that we’re doing everything we can to support Canada’s fight against COVID-19 while fueling the country’s economic recovery. Our collaboration with Cognizant Microsoft Business Group and the CDL Rapid Screening Consortium demonstrates what’s possible when we leverage technology to solve this incredible challenge.
-Suzanne Gagliese, VP, Global Partner Solutions, Microsoft Canada
This solution is rolling out across various Canadian organizations. By collaborating with the Cognizant Microsoft Business Group, CDL Rapid Screening Consortium, and Microsoft, you can easily integrate this solution with your return to workplace strategy.