Business as usual isn’t quite as usual as it was just a few weeks ago. As COVID-19 spreads across the country, there are steps your business should take to protect your workers and customers from contracting and spreading the virus. Most are common sense, and most require little investments or adjustments to implement. What follows are some simple steps you can take that will go a long way toward protecting everyone’s health and morale.
1. Fill up the Soap Containers in the Bathroom
Employees should regularly wash their hands with soap and water throughout the day. Make sure that you have sufficient stocks of handsoap for them to use. Remind employees to wet their hands, scrub for 20 seconds, then rinse.
2. Place Alcohol Swabs by Office Machinery
Place alcohol swabs next to shared computers, printers, copiers, and other office equipment. Encourage employees to wipe them down before using them. It is also a good idea to place several bottles of hand sanitizer near doors and shared spaces.
3. Toothpicks for the Elevator?
If your office has an elevator or keypads for alarms and door entry systems, tape foam sponges, and a disposable cup by the exterior/interior control panels. Insert toothpicks employees can use to punch the buttons and throw away the toothpicks when they are done.
4. Minimize Money Handling
Money is filthy. Even before the current headlines, cash was cruddy. If you have a retail business that handles cash regularly, encourage customers to use their cards. Further, make sure that all employees who handle cash transactions are provided with latex gloves to use at their discretion.
5. Limit Meetings
One of the best ways to help slow the spread of transmission is to limit the paths that can facilitate it. Meetings should be kept to an absolute minimum for now. Whenever possible, conduct meetings remotely.
6. Allow Sick Employees and Parents to Stay Home
It might be the sniffles; it might be something else. For now, it is better to err on the side of caution rather than risk introducing a virus into the office that could sideline half your workforce. Similarly, do what is possible to accommodate the needs of parents who may need to work from home until schools are reopened.
7. Disinfect Daily
Bathrooms, shared eating areas, meeting rooms, etc. should be thoroughly disinfected by janitorial staff each day. Similarly, request that each employee disinfect their own work station, particularly the surfaces they touch most often, before leaving at the end of the day. Allow them to stop their regular work 10-15 minutes early to perform this task.
8. Shut Down Communal Areas
This will not be popular, but it is essential. Shut down kitchen/cafeteria seating areas and request employees to eat at their desks. This will help maintain social distancing and mitigate the possibility of transmission.
9. Drop the Handshake
This simple gesture is interwoven into the fabric of our society. It is a tough habit to break, but let it slide for the time being. Replace it with an alternative you are comfortable with, whether it is an elbow bump, bow, or simple nod.
10. Promote Employee Health
Now is a great time to remind employees of things they can do to protect their health. Provide information on proper nutrition as well as any gym memberships, smoking cessation programs, or medical benefits employees can access via the company.
For more about steps your company can take to promote a safe and healthy work environment, contact Greenlink Payroll at (480) 385-2525. It is our pleasure to help you help your employees.