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Office re-opening guidelines & tips for food & pantry

Creating a new normal begins with health & safety measures. What are the new measures required for us to re-open our office and how do I apply them to my workplace? How can we adjust our communal workspaces and processes to reduce risk and better protect ourselves?

At CaterSpot, our business is helping companies plan & order great food for their office. In these post-pandemic times, we’re learning and sharing best practices for our community to better face this new normal in the workplace.


Kitchen & Pantry Area

1. Schedule staggered lunch shifts

Required Workplace Safe Management Measure. Set up a shift system to stagger lunch breaks for employees. This reduces the number of people congregating in the common area at once, which is a required Safe Management Measure for workplaces.

We recommend creating a schedule that can help your employees stick to the staggered approach, and we also recommend you consult your employees to ensure their proposed break times work for them. If you need any help creating such a schedule, we’re here to help.

The dining area should also be cleaned and tables disinfected between each lunch shift.

2. Add physical distancing markers where people congregate or queue

Required Workplace Safe Management Measure. Kitchens and break areas can get busy, so this is where physical distancing markers are most critical. The golden rule is to keep one  metre apart, but despite people’s best intentions, approximating this spatial barrier can be difficult without visual cues. You can use floor stickers, tape, paint – get creative!

3.  Rearrange dining seating

For dining areas, rearrange the tables and seating and add safe distancing markers to ensure employees know how they the safe distance while eating.

Space permitting, you could create more designated food/drink/break areas around the office, to give employees more options for having a break or bite with a buffer of space.

4. Set up sanitiser and hand wash stations

Required Workplace Safe Management Measure. Disinfecting agents (e.g. disinfectant sprays, paper towels and wipes) must be provided in common spaces such as pantries or canteens.

5. Increase cleaning frequency and supplies

Employers must ensure regular cleaning of common spaces, particularly areas with high human contact. Review the frequency of your cleaning and ensure a thorough clean and disinfection is done as often as possible, best if it is at the end of each day or shift. You may also need to check the stock of your cleaning supplies for this intensive schedule.


Catered Meals & Food

6. Provide lunch in the office

The lunch break in the office is safer than employees venturing out to the crowded food courts, especially if you stick to the safe individually packaged meals.

7. Change to individual packaged meals (no buffets)

Now is not the time for a big buffet in the office. As an alternative, consider safe, individually packaged lunches and meals. Individual packaging is a big help in reducing exposure to hazards, and there are a few ways you can incorporate more of it in the office.

We help companies have the best food delivered safely, with each employee getting their own customized, individually packaged and labelled meal. We highly recommend a customized food program for your team, and we can help you create one any time.

8.  Set up a safe meal collection process

When setting up meals in the pantry for meal time, space out the meal boxes across the table instead of stacking them in groups. Put out signs to ensure people look first and do not touch/open before choosing their meal. Have a sanitizer on the table so employees can disinfect after taking their meal.

9.  Provide individually-packaged cutlery for meals

You may also want to restrict the use of reusable dishware. Stock up on individually packaged disposable cutlery packets to provide instead for meal times.

10.  Consider having a dedicated person to serve food

Some companies are considering assigning a dedicated staff to serve/pass out meals. This can be a great idea for large employee headcounts. You can also consider this person to distribute pantry snacks & drinks to employees for added safety.

If you would like help with this, our Meal Plan & Pantry services can provide a dedicated on-site coordinator as part of your food program.

11.  Enable contactless delivery for food by designating a drop-off area

For offices with smaller head counts, the best way to enable contactless delivery is to create a designated area near the front entrance. This limits contact with delivery personnel, and it also provides a place for incoming items to be sanitized before entering the rest of the office.

If your employee headcount is larger, we recommend hiring a trained meal attendant to receive and organize the incoming meals. If you would like help with this, our Meal Plan & Pantry services can provide a dedicated on-site coordinator as part of your food program.


Pantry Snacks & Drinks

12.  Change to individually packaged snacks

Rethink what’s in your office kitchen cupboards. Consider replacing fresh fruit, bulk cereal, or bulk nuts in favour of individually sealed snacks.

13.  Space out items in chillers & snack shelves

Avoid employees touching many items while trying to grab a drink or snack. Space out the pantry supplies so it’s easier to collect safely.

14.  Sanitize process for after snack collection

Provide sanitizer or wipes next to chillers & snack displays for employees to use after collecting snacks or drinks.

15.  Better Snack Dispensers

Instead of employees digging their hands into cookie jars, twist snack dispensers allow to turn a tap, put their bowl underneath and get their portion of snacks poured straight in. Ensure that there are wet-wipes next to it to wipe before and after each use.

16.  Changes to Coffee Machines & Water Dispensers

Ensure that there are wet-wipes next to it to wipe before and after each use

Alternatively, you can consider putting your coffee machine out of commission during this period and offer other coffee options like individual coffee sachets or bottled water instead.

17.  Provide individually-packaged cutlery in the pantry

You may also want to restrict the use of reusable dishware. Stock up on individually packaged disposable cutlery packets to provide instead for food in the office.


Company Events & Activities

New workplace safety measures mean many regular company activities won’t come back right away as normal.

All social gatherings (e.g. birthday celebrations, team bonding activities, etc.) at the workplace must be cancelled or deferred and employers must also cancel or defer all events or activities that involve close and prolonged contact amongst participants, e.g. conferences, seminars and exhibitions.

So how can you bring back your culture and keep team spirit up during these times? Try these alternatives!

18. Send individual Birthday & Workiversary treats

Don’t overlook employees’ special day. Instead of gathering together in the pantry to celebrate birthdays or work anniversaries, order a special individual treat like a cakelet or small box of cupcakes for the employee.

Order in to the office or deliver right to their home if they’re still working from home. We can help you with both office & home deliveries with our new WFH remote food program.

19. Change to virtual trainings & seminars

Trainings and seminars are easy to do virtually via teleconferencing tools like Zoom. You can also opt to order individual meals/food for the participants (because food is arguably the best part of seminars!).

Order individual packaged meals in to the office while employees do virtual seminars/trainings at their desk or deliver right to their home if they’re still working from home. We can help you with both office & home deliveries with our new WFH remote food program.

20. Host virtual team building activities

Don’t stop celebrating the special moments & milestones as a company. Stay connected & bonded even while some of your team works from the office while others are home.

Our concierge team can help you with team building activities with food for your team to try together, virtually. Popular activities are virtual happy hours with DIY cocktail kits or team dinner with DIY meal kit.



How CaterSpot can help

Corporate Catering Platform

Our platform makes it easy to order in food for the office. Order great food from 350+ restaurants & caterers in Singapore, in just a few clicks.

  • filter & find safe menu options like individually packaged meals or caterers who can provide individually packaged cutlery
  • easy group order feature to let employees choose their own meals from restaurant you select
  • contactless delivery

Learn more


Event Concierge

Get the help of a dedicated catering expert to navigate ordering food safely in these challenging times. Our concierge team are working with many companies and can share best practices & help you prepare or comply with safety measures. They can also create bespoke options & proposals with our catering partners that meet your company’s safety needs.

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WFH Services

With so many employees working from home, we’ve launched a new service to continue serving your company’s great food perks, at home. Re-purpose your office food budget to send curated food and snack packages to your teams at home, whether it’s a care package, birthday or workiversary treats, meals for virtual lunch & learns, DIY kits for team buildings, and more.

Learn more


Meal Plans / Customized Food Programs

Ordering regular meals for the office has never been easier. CaterSpot takes care of everything – from planning to ordering, so you spend less time ordering food and more time on things that matter.

If your company is considering launching daily meals for the office as a measure to keep employees safe, our service makes it easy to launch with no extra work for your team. We can also provide a dedicated on-site coordinator to help with receiving deliveries, setting up meals, serving food, and helping with safety measures.

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