On-site restart at customer premises : interview with one of our jobcoaches

Test engineer Paul was the first Passwerk consultant to take the step towards a customer’s partial reopening, in this case NxtPort. We asked his job coach Femke her perspective on this process experience.

What measures has NxtPort taken to enable an on-site return?

In consultation with NxtPort, Paul was able to complete a relatively quick on-site return because it turned out that it was not always easy for Paul to work remotely full-time. More specifically, he has been allowed to work part-time again from his workplace for the past several weeks. The necessary safety measures are very carefully respected there. For example, hand gel and disinfectant are always provided, masks are also available, and the building manager also drew up a circulation plan for the common parts of the building. Furthermore, the NxtPort team was split up in two to guarantee continuity and temporary permanent jobs were determined that can be used week after week to guarantee social distancing.

To explain all these exceptional measures to Paul, Vanessa (SPOC – Single Point of Contact) had arranged to be present on the first day of the return to explain all security measures to Paul.

What else did Passwerk do in this regard?

Of course, Passwerk also took the necessary measures that would enable Paul to resume his duties at NxtPort with a sense of security. For example, washable mouth masks were provided by the company, to which I, as job coach, attached the necessary instructions for Paul. Furthermore, in my role as job coach, I have proactively gone over all the practical elements in detail with our SPOC Vanessa. This way, it was clear to both parties what one could expect from each other to make Paul’s return smooth and safe.

After the return, I followed Paul’s progress closely and it soon became clear that he had picked the thread at NxtPort back up in a very successful way. The few colleagues in the office and the almost empty buses and trams on their way to NxtPort also proved to be stimulating factors for Paul.

Did the consultant – in this case Paul – see fit to go back to work on-site at NxtPort?

Absolutely. Paul soon found it difficult to work full-time from home. For him, a partial return to the office felt like a relief. Paul was also not afraid to take public transport again and he was well aware of the security measures.

Did you pay extra attention to Paul’s follow-up?

Because I know that it is not easy for Paul to work remotely, I have increased the number of telephone contacts with him. An important focus in this respect was the joint design of an adjusted daily schedule and structure. For example, Vanessa, his SPOC at NxtPort, called him every morning around 9 o’clock to adjust his workload. For Paul, this phone call was a clear start of his working day. Paul also started with a daily walking moment. This is how he guaranteed the necessary relaxation and human contact for himself.

Were there certain disadvantages for NxtPort to have Paul working from home?

Because Paul does not have a separate office space at home, it is difficult for him to separate his work from his private life. This overlap has a clear detrimental effect on the monitoring of the necessary structure and his ability to concentrate. In addition, Paul was also unlucky that his neighbours were doing some major work next door, making it almost permanently noisy.

Why did NxtPort decide to reopen on-site working?

Although working from home throughout the COVID-19 crisis remains the standard for NxtPort, it was decided to allow employees to work in the office on prearranged days. These allowances apply in the first place to those employees who have more difficulties with working from home, as well as to the start-up of new employees and training.

Jobcoach Femke

Berchem (HQ)
Posthofbrug 12 bus 7
2600 Berchem

Dieudonné Lefèvrestraat 4
1020 Brussel

Kempische Steenweg 311/2.04
(Corda Campus)
3500 Hasselt

Kwadestraat 151a bus 41
(Westwing Park)
8800 Roeselare




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