How to Safely Resume Meetings in Conference Spaces

03 January 2022

Considering the revised guidance issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention regarding masks and social distancing for vaccinated individuals in indoor spaces, it seems that businesses can safely resume using conference spaces as usual if attendees are inoculated and local regulations allow for such a gathering. Besides regular cleaning measures, nothing else seems patently necessary. That said, if all your employees aren’t vaccinated or local mandates still don’t allow you to use conference spaces in the customary fashion—or if you just want to give yourself, your employees, and/or your visiting client's peace of mind—there are certainly steps you can take to make those spaces usable without a major investment of human or financial resources.

Maximize Ventilation

In any confined space, ventilation is key to thwarting the spread of microorganisms and the illnesses they cause. If your conference space has outward-facing windows that can be opened and the weather/environment permit doing so, open them! It’s a cost and time-effective way to massively decrease the concentration of microorganisms and other contaminates in the air, not to mention the myriad of emotional benefits that come from exposure to fresh air. Be mindful, though, that this can be a double-edged proposition because open windows are two-way streets. What serves as a means of escape for viruses and bacteria can become an entryway for allergens or other harmful impurities.

Fans, on the other hand, are an excellent way to keep air moving without introducing new contaminants. But they can be noisy, and higher quality options typically carry price tags to match. A better option, at least in some spaces, is a HEPA air filter. These can be purchased as freestanding units for relatively little money and, while still a source of some unwanted noise, can be considerably quieter than fans in the same price range. You may even find that using a small or low-powered fan in tandem with an air purifier works best for your space.

Maximize Space

Using your conference space as intended will almost certainly preclude giving each attendee their own six-foot bubble of personal space, but that doesn’t mean they need to sit shoulder-to-shoulder or face-to-face. Place chairs all over the space, not just gathered around a central feature like a table. Allow as much space between those chairs as possible, even if it’s only a foot or two; your employees and visiting clients will be grateful for the extra room to stretch out whether or not they care about the social distancing aspect. Where possible, try to angle or offset chairs that are across from one another so that attendees have breathing room—literally and figuratively. In short, do what you can to make attendees feel comfortable. Human nature is to seek out some amount of personal space even in a crowd, so offering that to attendees is really a dual-purpose act.

PaperPack, Inc. has been in business for more than 20 years. Our knowledgeable, dedicated staff are avid problem-solvers and experts in their fields. Contact us today to find out how we can help your business get back to the way things were or the way you’ve always wanted them to be.