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4 ways to ensure safety at your workplace during pandemics

4/1/2020

4 ways to ensure safety at your workplace during pandemics

A pandemic on a scale we've never seen before is affecting not only the U.S., but the entire world. The novel coronavirus is officially considered a pandemic by the World Health Organization, and appropriate precautions must be taken to slow its spread. While countless jobs are implementing work-from-home policies to encourage quarantine and slow the spread of the virus, there are also many workplaces that have no such luxury, including different types of manufacturing organizations. Knowing how to keep your workforce safe is essential during a public health crisis.

1) Change the flow of business

What this means is to reduce unnecessary contact between employees - if your location services customers, this also applies to them as well. Keeping staff in their departments exposes fewer people to the spread of a virus or bacterial organism. Non-emergency doors should be closed at all times, and customer-facing areas of the location should be shut down or otherwise restricted. The fewer new interactions between different people, whether worker or guest, the fewer vectors there are for a virus to spread.

2) Allow work-from-home for roles that can be done remotely

Despite the nature of manufacturing, not all jobs need to be done in-person. Support or corporate staff on-location should be allowed to work from home to limit the spread of the disease and keep other workers safe. Again, the fewer people present to give or receive the disease, the less the virus has a chance to proliferate - not only does this help your company, but it also helps your local community as well. It is a matter of public health, after all!

3) Mandate employees cover up

In the midst of an epidemic or pandemic, it is important to not forget the basics. Having employees wear disposable gloves can help reduce the amount of contact both surfaces and human skin receive from the virus. When the pathology of a disease calls for it, surgical masks should also be worn to prevent coughs from spreading the virus, and the reduce unnecessary touching of the face. By encouraging optimal hygiene practices like these, workers who must report into work can be kept safe while they perform their duties.

4) Stock up on hand sanitizer

The best manufacturing centers will have many hand sanitizer dispensers on location for just this purpose In the event a disease is making the rounds, companies should install these devices throughout the factory floor and mandate certain usage requirements, like having employees sanitize their hands every 30 minutes or every time they enter or leave the floor. Even the simple presence of hand sanitizer in public view can greatly improve hygiene among employees. However, remember that hand sanitizer is considered less effective than hand washing, according to the CDC.

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