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Safe return to the workplace...Excited, cautious and respectful

May 19, 2022, 14:49 PM by Hugo Fiore Lacelle
It has been two years since we’ve had to adjust, organizationally and personally, to respond to a global pandemic, and through this unprecedented journey we’ve changed the way we live...

Maria Vomiero

Director, Human Resources

Toromont Cat, Concord

It has been two years since we’ve had to adjust, organizationally and personally, to respond to a global pandemic, and through this unprecedented journey we’ve changed the way we live, the way we work, and the way we interact with one another as well. Through diligent application of our protocols, we have sought to keep our people, our customers and our communities safe, and through this focus on safety we have had a relatively low COVID transmission rate at our Toromont workplaces. One of the most important protocols we implemented immediately was to remove a large portion of our employees from our branch and office locations, and this group has largely been working remotely for two years, with physical distancing being a key element of our COVID risk reduction program.  However, as COVID cases continue to decline, and in alignment with public health guidelines, we are excited that in April we began a gradual, safe return to our workplace for our employees. 

We believe that in most cases, personal connections and interactions are important to relationship building, to effective problem solving and for personal and professional growth. We also know that our Toromont culture, which is built on a team of people that care for one another, support our customers, and drive results together, works better when we connect in person where possible.

However, the ‘new Toromont’ will look different in some cases; as we will leverage all that we’ve learned over the past two years about using technology more effectively and leveraging our networks and our resources to execute effectively.  This gradual return will see employees returning in phases, so that we can continue to monitor the health and safety of the workplace; we can adjust if needed and slow down our return as required.  Further, throughout the gradual return we will continue to assess protocols and adjust where appropriate, as we have done throughout this pandemic. 

Many individuals are returning to a hybrid schedule, wherein they will work in the branch a few days a week, and work remotely the remainder; this not only provides individual flexibility, but it also allows us to better leverage our technology, our real-estate, and reduce our environmental impact as well.  A small number may be fully remote, and while viable from an operational perspective, it is important even for fully remote employees to access their teams, and the Toromont workplace, in person where and when it makes sense.  Over the next several months, we will adjust to our hybrid work environment and further identify opportunities for collaboration, innovation and success as we leverage all that we’ve learned over the past two years.

One critical element to our safe return is to remain respectful of individual choices and circumstances.  As public health guidelines lessen restrictions in our communities, we should remember that there will be individuals, for various reasons, that may continue to wear masks beyond the mandatory period, and some that may require specific accommodations.  We may also continue to have customer requests that require specific protocols in certain situations which we will continue to adhere to.  We should all remember that a cornerstone of our culture is our safe and respectful workplace, and therefore respect for one another, for personal choices, and for individual situations will be critical to our safe return and our ongoing collaborative and supportive work environment.

This is yet another step in the Toromont journey and marks an exciting new chapter.  There is no doubt that our new hybrid work environment will need to be fine-tuned over time as we leverage what we’ve learned and position our team and business for long term success.  We remain always One Team, with One Mission: To be the FIRST CHOICE in the markets we serve, for our customers, our suppliers, our shareholders and our employees.  We can only accomplish this together.

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