How To Keep Your Staff Safe During The COVID-19 Pandemic

The coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, is rapidly spreading around the world and in the USA, claiming thousands of lives every single day. However, the world still has to keep tuning and that means people still need to go to work. It is the responsibility of employers and business owners to take steps to reduce the risks to the staff and keep them as safe as possible while the virus is rampaging. Here, we look at some of the things that you can do to keep your staff safe but keep your business ticking over at the same time.    

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Education and communication

Employers should communicate with the staff honestly and regularly so that workers are aware of the coronavirus and are up-to-date with the latest guidance. Communicate with your staff on a frequent basis with regard to corporate policies and procedures for proper hygiene, business travel, quarantines, remote working and the safety precautions that you must all undertake will show your staff that you are monitoring the situation and care about their health and welfare.  Don't be afraid to ask them for input and suggestions, especially when it comes to hygiene issues, as they may have a better idea as they are working on the frontline of it.

Take precautions and practice good hygiene

The precautions and requirements for good hygiene are well-publicized in the media but it is important that you are constantly reiterating and reminding your staff of them. Some of the things to do include:

  • Washing your hands for at least twenty seconds as often as possible

  • Practice social distancing

  • Wearing personal protective equipment such as Face Masks and gloves where appropriate.

  • Avoiding touching the face

  • Covering the mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing

  • Regularly cleaning and disinfecting surfaces

It is important that you enable these practices by providing adequate time for handwashing and sanitizing, making sure there is a supply of soap, hot water, or hand sanitizer that is a minimum of 60% alcohol. To help your staff maintain social distancing, stagger breaktimes, mark out floor spaces and if necessary, reduce the amount of staff you have on-site at one time.

Actively encourage sick employees to stay home and send home anyone showing symptoms

The CDC insists that anyone showing any symptom of the coronavirus stays at home and self-isolates. However, many employees worry that if they do not turn into their job, they will be reprimanded, lose money, or in the worst case, lose their jobs. Make sure that your staff knows that this is not going to be the case and that should they feel unwell, they should go home and stay home until they either have a negative test result or the symptoms pass. 

COVID-19 is likely to be a part of our personal and professional lives for a long time to come, so the measures we put into place now will be something we have to follow for months or even years. The most important thing it to check in with your staff, let them know what is going on and make sure they know that their job is safe should they be unwell.

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