COVID-proof your building: seven steps to safety
October 19th, 2020
With new national and local restrictions recently announced by the government, it is clear that we are not through the worst of the coronavirus pandemic. Since COVID-19 is not going anywhere fast, we have decided to share seven essential steps to ensure that your premises remain as safe as possible during this difficult period.
1. Assess your risk
The first step to protecting your premises is getting a handle on the risks it’s facing. You need to identify what work activities could lead to COVID transmissions, think about who is at risk, assess how likely people are to be exposed, and eliminate any obvious risk areas. If you have fewer than five employees you are not mandated to write anything down (although you could still benefit from doing it). You can check out the government’s official guidelines for compiling a risk assessment here.
2. Keep social distancing
Social distancing is an incredibly important part of the strategy to defend against COVID-19. You need to ensure people are kept 2 metres apart whenever possible – if this really isn’t possible, then a 1 metre distance with risk mitigation is acceptable.
3. Cleanliness is key
Good hygiene has never been more important. You need to make sure that your workplace is kept clean, with all surfaces cleaned with the appropriate solutions. Additionally, it is vitally important to provide staff with hand sanitiser (at least 70% alcohol) and educate them on the importance of maintaining clean hands, avoiding unnecessary contact and equipment sharing, and sneezing / coughing into their inner elbow.
4. Communicate with your workers
More than ever before, it is hugely important that everyone in your building is on the same page. It only takes one person sneezing into open space, not washing their hands, or coming into work ill, to give your entire business COVID-19. So make sure you clearly communicate the steps your taking to mitigate coronavirus risk to all your employees.
5. Let people work from home when possible
The best way to keep your premises free of COVID-19 is to keep them empty. Of course, this is not always practical, but when possible, you should encourage staff to work from home, providing any equipment they require to do so effectively, and keeping in regular contact with them.
6. Keep an eye on the vulnerable
You have a duty of care to your most vulnerable workers to shield them from as much risk as possible. This category of people includes the elderly, as well as those with pre-existing health conditions (such as diabetes, obesity, heart disease, and others). You need to consider the best ways to minimise risk to this group of people, and – if necessary – find a way for them to work in isolation.
7. Make sure your air conditioning and ventilation systems are up to speed
Regular maintenance of your air conditioning and ventilation systems have never been more important. We know that COVID-19 is spread through the air, so ensuring that the air in your building is kept fresh and your airflow systems are operating they way that the should is vital.
Edmund Services can help you with a number of these steps, including assessments, deep cleaning, air conditioning and ventilation maintenance, and more. If you would like to learn more about how we can help you stay safe from COVID-19, call 01708 222 221 and speak to one of our friendly and professional staff members today.