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COVID 19 Safety Plan: Vancouver


In order to adhere to WorkSafeBC’s plan, we have assessed our workplace in order to identify places where the risk of transmission is introduced. This plan has been developed to mitigate risk and ensure the health and safety of our owls. We will continue to assess the workplace after operations resume to ensure risks are identified and managed.

Our Approach

The virus that causes COVID 19 spreads in several ways, including through droplets when a person coughs or sneezes, or from touching a contaminated surface before touching the face. The best way to protect owls is to encourage owls to stay home if they are sick and if they need to come into the office, remind them to wash their hands often and follow precautions to keep themselves and others safe. As an organization, we will commit to implementing strict cleaning protocols, providing ample hand sanitizing stations and disinfecting wipes, and requiring owls to wear masks in the office.

A re-orientation video is being developed and will be mandatory viewing for each owl returning to the office. This video will reinforce the new normal for the office environment and the things we are doing to keep them safe.

This plan will be reviewed by members of Hootsuite’s executive team, key leaders and local health and safety committees - wherever they exist.

Our New Normal

To ensure a safe and healthy work environment, we will require owls returning to the office to formally acknowledge that:

  • they are not currently experiencing any symptoms of COVID 19;

  • have not been exposed to anyone (that they know of) who actively has or has symptoms of COVID 19 within the last 14 days;

  • and that they comply with the new code of conduct.

New Code of Conduct:

  • Safety first

    : We welcome owls back into the office, but please act responsibly to keep everyone safe. Stay home if you have any flu-like symptoms and inform your manager if you have a suspected or confirmed case of COVID 19.

  • Wear a mask

    : You are required to wear a mask while moving around in the office and encouraged to do so while commuting on public transportation.

  • Maintain Physical Distance

    : You must maintain a distance of at least 6 feet (2 metres) from other Owls at all times and practice physical distancing to the greatest extent possible.

  • Follow directional signage

    : You must comply with directional signage in kitchens, hallways, elevators, meeting rooms, bathrooms and on floors.

  • No visitors

    : Hootsuite is restricting visitor and dog access to our offices for the foreseeable future. Do not bring any customers, friends or interviewees into the office. Please leave your dog at home too.

  • Do your part to keep the office clean

    : You are required to disinfect your workstations and chairs at the end of every day.

Phased Re-Entry

In order to slowly reintroduce owls back into our offices, we have developed a phased approach. The balance of our workforce will continue to work from home for the immediate future. We will continue to review and adjust plans throughout the phases as necessary.

  • Phase 1A

    : 15% of Vancouver based owls that need/want to come back into the office will be allowed to return on July 2, 2020. We will allow a maximum of 73 owls located at HQ1 in Vancouver.

  • Phase 1B

    : 15% per location for Global owls in locations where the local health authorities have given permission for office workers to return. Again, this offer will be open to those owls that need/want to come back into the office. Offices with less than 10 people will remain closed.

  • Phase 2

    : 30% per location for owls in locations where the local health authorities have further relaxed restrictions and are allowing gatherings of more than 50 people. Offices with less than 10 owls will be invited to return in this phase - in compliance with the 30% occupancy rule and applicable local restrictions.

  • Phase 3

    : Full workforce is allowed to return to office.

Operational Requirements

New Cleaning Protocols:

Hootsuite will provide more frequent cleaning of kitchens, bathrooms, photocopiers, elevator buttons, door handles, meeting room door handles and all other high touch surfaces. Cleaning crews will be sanitizing the plexiglass barriers (HQ1) and all workstations once a day, from Monday to Friday.

Additional hand sanitizing stations will be provided throughout the office and disinfecting wipes will be provided at the end of each bank of desks. Owls will be required to sanitize their workstations at the beginning and end of every day.

Additional paper towels will be provided in bathrooms by the doors. Owls will be directed to use a paper towel to open doors and a bin will be provided on either side of the door. Extensive signage has been installed to remind owls to wash their hands often and avoid touching their faces.

Shared Kitchen Equipment

No coffee or milk will be provided in the Phase 1A and owls will be required to bring their own cutlery, dishes and mugs to work and will be responsible for cleaning their own dishes. Hand sanitizer will be provided in kitchens so that owls can sanitize their hands after touching fridge/microwave door handles.


Hootsuite will rework HVAC systems so that there is an increased air flow pushing more fresh air. Preference for 100% fresh air circulation. All HVAC systems will be run longer every day.


There will be signage throughout the office to encourage owls to follow the code of conduct, adhere to directional signage, use hand sanitizing stations, how to put on and take off a mask etc.

Maintaining Physical Distancing

Physically distanced space plan

The office space plans have been adjusted to reflect physical distancing requirements, ensuring there is a minimum of 6ft between owls. Owls will be assigned a desk that they will use for all of Phase 1, regardless of how many days they are working in the office. Owls that work together regularly will be assigned seats in the same area. Departments will be limited in the size of teams able to work in the office - in order to prevent entire teams from being impacted in the event of an outbreak in the office.

Directional signage

Directional signage will be installed in common hallways, kitchens, bathrooms and stairwells. Elevators will be unoperational unless there is a medical reason for use. Front desk employees will have a key for the elevator in case it must be used. Where owls are public facing, a plexiglass barrier will be installed to prevent transmission.


Owls will be required to wear masks while in the office. If owls are working at desks and are abiding by physical distancing requirements, owls can remove their masks. However, when owls are in common areas (bathrooms, kitchens etc), owls will be required to wear their masks. Hootsuite will provide reusable masks for all owls in the office and if they forget their reusable masks, disposable ones will be available for their use. It is also recommended that owls also wear masks if they are using public transportation to and from work. Signage will be provided throughout the offices to ensure owls understand how to put masks on and take them off.

Meeting Rooms

Small meeting rooms will be closed and larger meeting rooms will have their capacity reduced during Phase 1A. The gym, yoga room and Screech room will also remain closed during this time.

Personal Mail/Courier Delivery/Pickup

During Phase 1A, we will temporarily no longer be accepting personal mail delivery in the office. Not accepting personal packages will help us control the amount of people entering the office during this phase of our reopening, reduce handling by the front desk team, and keep our returning owls safe!

Isolation Room

One meeting room (Hawk) will be designated an “isolation room” in the event an owl becomes sick while working in the office. This room will be labelled and unavailable for other uses. It will have two plastic chairs that are easy to disinfect, hand sanitizer, disposable water bottles, disposable masks and other materials to ensure the owl is comfortable while a ride home is coordinated. Owls who need to make use of the Isolation Room will need to follow the reporting protocol detailed below.

Outbreak Protocols

Feeling sick while in office

In the event of an owl feeling sick in the office in a Hootsuite office, the following steps will be taken.

  1. Owl


    notifies their manager that they are feeling sick.

  2. Manager


    directs the owl to the designated Isolation room (Hawk) until they can be sent home or receive medical attention.

  3. Manager


    sends the owl home and instructs them to contact their local health authority for guidance, stay away from the office and self-monitor for 14 days, and communicate with their People Partner if COVID 19 symptoms arise.

  4. People Partner


    will connect with Facilities to pull an access report and notify impacted owls, on a confidential basis, that they may have come into contact with someone feeling ill and that they should stay home from the office and self-monitor for 14 days.

  5. Owl

    : If the owl confirms a COVID 19 case, or if the symptoms suggest a COVID 19 case, additional steps will be taken as per below.

Positive diagnosis while working in the office

In the event an owl has a positive diagnosis for COVID 19 and they have been working in a Hootsuite office, the following steps will be taken:

  1. Manager


    emails their People Partner to notify of a positive diagnosis. The manager communicates to the owl with a positive diagnosis that they will be required to stay home until they are cleared by a doctor to return to work.

  2. People Partner


    notifies Facilities of the location/building the owl was working in and the last day they were in the office. People Partner does not disclose the name of the owl.

  3. Facilities will:

    1. Work with security providers, landlords or coworking companies to request access reports for the last 14 days (where available). If access reports are not available, all owls that were working in the office during the 14 day period before diagnosis will be notified and asked to work from home for 14 days before coming back to the office.

    2. Post on Workplace that all owls working in that location must go home immediately and the building will be closed for 48 hours due to a COVID 19 positive case.

    3. Connect with the local cleaning team or co-working team to have building sanitization scheduled. Facilities will cancel all desk bookings for the next 48 hours in that location and notify owls of the cancellation. Facilities also will also notify other contractors / vendors that may have been exposed.

  4. People Partner


    will review access reports and cross reference the times the owl was in the building. People Partner will notify those that have crossed paths with the unidentified owl that they need to self-quarantine for 14 days. If the owl came into significant contact with a large number of colleagues, consider whether to voluntarily contact public health authorities to receive advice and assistance. If the owl has reason to believe that the infection occurred at the workplace or in the course of employment, work with Legal and the health and safety committee to determine whether to notify the regulator.

  5. Facilities


    will communicate via Workplace when the building is open again.

Risk Identification and Mitigation

Risk Factors

Areas of concern

Risk Mitigation Strategy

High risk transmission areas

Meeting rooms, desks, phone booths, kitchens, bathrooms, gym and yoga

  • Small meeting rooms, phone booths, gyms/yoga rooms and rooms in the parkade will remain closed during Phase 1.

  • Large meeting rooms will have reduced capacity.

  • Bathrooms and kitchens will be sanitized multiple times throughout the day from Monday - Friday.

  • New space plan will space occupants out by a minimum of 6 ft.

  • Desks will be assigned to employees by Global Facilities

High risk teams

Global Facilities

Plexiglass screens will be installed at the front desk at HQ1. Screens will be sanitized at the end of every day.

People team

Interviews/meetings are being done virtually.

Sales teams

Sales calls are being done virtually.

Shared equipment

Printers, Google Meet hardware, equipment, and coffee machines

High touch surfaces will be sanitized multiple times throughout the day from Monday - Friday.

Coffee and fruit services will remain suspended and will be assessed on an ongoing basis. When such services are resumed, physical distancing will be required and enhanced cleaning protocols will be in effect.

High touch surfaces

Door handles, elevator buttons, photocopy buttons, coffee machines, light switches

High touch surfaces will be multiple times throughout the day from Monday - Friday.

Reviewed by Local Health and Safety Committee

This plan has been reviewed by Hootsuite’s local health and safety committee including:

  • Hayley Court

  • Paulina Lis

  • Heather Blackwell

  • Christopher Read

  • Ken Ho; and

  • Bruna Barbosa.

Ongoing communications and updates

Hootsuite Executives will continue to provide frequent and transparent communications on Workplace as long as is required. This plan will be a living document and will be updated and revised as we move through phases.