As we prepare to welcome our team back to our physical office, we’re carefully going through the requirements and best practices given to us by the Québec Government and Québec’s workplace health and safety board (CNESST). Our primary concern is keeping our staff healthy and safe. 

Anywhere we’ve gone over the past months a survey process has been required. How are we feeling? Do we have symptoms? These and other questions will continue moving forward and need to become a part of a return-to-work protocol, at least for the foreseeable future.

When our staff, who are working on site arrive, we’re asking them to complete a mandatory “Onsite Health Check In”. As we were planning our office reopening, we knew we needed to make this modern, easy and effective. We thought about the tools we use every day, and immediately Slack came to mind. Slack has a lightweight “Workflow Builder” that offers a simple set of tools to automate routine processes into Slack workflows. A workflow is an automated multi-step task or process — a perfect candidate for our “Check In App”.

Here’s what we’ve done. It includes notes and the workflow source code that we’re happy to share.

The playbook:

  1. Team members arrive at Plank’s front office
  2. Slack is opened on a mobile device and the “Onsite Health Check In Workflow” is selected from Plank’s #general channel (Looks like a little “lightning bolt” inside the text entry chat box)
  3. Answer NO/YES to the 7 questions (all default to NO)
  4. Answers are submitted to a private channel overseen by a manager
  5. The workflow sends an assigned manager a direct message with the answer to question one. The workflow publishes “Username has checked in at the Plank office” to the #general channel

This system works well for us. We’ve been using it with a small subset of our staff who have been coming in to help improve and ready our office. In our ongoing commitment to communicate and share knowledge, we’re offering the workflow to download and modify as you wish. Remember that your Slack won’t match our Slack. Feel free to modify, as this process can always be improved. 

Some tips:

  • You can find the Workflow builder under your Slack Account > Tools > Workflow Builder
  • When saving the medical answers — be sure to respect employee confidentiality
  • Create a new private channel to test your workflow — once you’re happy you can move it to its permanent home
  • Find or create a nice icon for your workflow — A square image PNG that’s 128px or larger
  • Workflows can have “Collaborators”  — who can help edit workflow steps and app settings

After months apart, we understand that returning to an office environment is exciting for some but uncomfortable for others. Part of our protocol stipulates clearly that no team member is required to return. Plank has been fully remote since March, and for those who feel safer at home our set-up is inclusive, regardless of environment. 

As our doors prepare to open, we wish you a safe, happy summer ahead. 

Download the Workflow for Slack

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