How to implement staggered working and break hours at workplace?

Updated: Jun 16

Employers must implement staggered working and break hours to reduce possible congregation of employees at all common spaces, including entrances, exits, lobbies, canteens and pantries.


The staggered working hours must be implemented over at least three 1-hourly blocks, with not more than half of the employees reporting to work within each 1-hour block. For example, if the normal working hours are from 9am to 6pm, employers could stagger employees’ reporting times at one-hour intervals between 7.30am and 10.30am (e.g. 7.30am to 8.30am, 8.30am to 9.30am and 9.30am to 10.30am), with corresponding staggered timings for end of work. Timings of lunch and other breaks must also be staggered.


Where possible, reporting and ending times should not coincide with peak-hour travel, especially if employees require the use of public transport.


If it is not feasible to implement staggered working and break hours due to operational reasons (e.g. manufacturing production line activities), employers must implement other systems to reduce congregation of employees at common spaces (e.g. arrange for different groups of employees to arrive/depart through different entrances/exits).


Employees may consume their meals at the food establishment itself, but employers must:

  • Designate and clearly demarcate a dining area for employees only.

  • Stagger meal times.

  • Employees should dine alone and keep a distance of at least one metre from another individual.

  • Employees should dine quickly and leave the designated dining area in a clean state after they have had their meals.

  • Coffeeshop and food court stall operators may consume their meals at the tables in front of their stalls, and should adhere to the measures. This includes having staggered meal times, dining alone and keeping a distance of at least one metre from another individual, as well as dining quickly and leaving the tables in a clean state after they have consumed their meals.