As we begin to reopen our businesses and return to life as normal, you may be asking yourself what steps you should take to prepare to reopen your business in this post-covid19 world.
Some things may be different, and some additional precautions may be necessary however. Here are some things to keep in mind while you’re planning your reopening!
Every business is different
Because every business is different, it’s important to carefully think through how your business functions, your customer flow, and how your customers and staff interact with others throughout the day.
While we can give you some things to think about, it’s important to tailor any reopening plans to your business and its needs.
We'll still need to take precautions
As we begin to reopen our businesses, we’ll need to continue to take necessary precautions to protect our customers and staff. For instance:
• Staff that are not feeling well should be encouraged to stay home.
You may need to post appropriate signage
In addition to signage intended to enforce social distancing, Pennsylvania is requiring businesses to post a "Covid-19 Safety Procedures for Businesses Flyer" on the premesis. This flyer is required to be posted in staff common areas as well as near the public entrance if the business is currently serving the public.
Businesses should also consider posting visual aids and reminders for staff on the proper use of provided safety equipment and handwashing requirements.
You may want to reduce what customers have access to
Because any item that’s in front of your customers can potentially be contaminated, you may want to reduce as best as possible how much is in front of them. For example, you may wish to move impulse buy items that would normally sit at your counter to behind your register where you can provide it to the customer upon request. This also will make regular disinfection of these surfaces much easier.
You may need to revise staff flow
As we get back to work, it will become necessary to rethink how our businesses operate and how our staff interact. Here are a few things to consider:
• For consumer-facing workers, you may want to install a fiberglass partition to further protect staff during these interactions.
Your staff may require additional training
While you are providing your staff with safety equipment such as masks and gloves, it’s also important to make sure that they are adequately trained in the proper use of this equipment. This includes how to safely don and wear this equipment, activities that should be avoided, as well as how to properly remove and dispose of this equipment.
Similarly, for staff that will be responsible for disinfecting surfaces, they will need to clearly understand what areas they should be focusing on, how often, and how this disinfection should be performed.
You may need to revise customer flow
As we begin to open our shops and businesses to customers, you may need to revise your customer flow to enforce social distancing and protect your staff and other customers. As an example:
• Often touched surfaces, such as counters, conveyor belts, and credit card machines should be disinfected between customers, which will require that customers wait for this to be completed.
You will need to implement disinfection plans
As we prepare to reopen, every business is going to need to think about disinfection to protect their staff and customers from Coronavirus. Not only will businesses have to consider disinfection to prepare their businesses to reopen, but they will need to put in place maintenance disinfection procedures to address surfaces that staff and customers may come in contact with during the day.
Disinfecting to prepare to reopen: This should be performed by a qualified Infectious Disease Disinfection Service that has the training and equipment necessary to properly disinfect your space. Professional disinfection services should also be considered whenever you’ve had a known exposure such as an employee or customer that was found to be sick with Covid19. Depending on how much traffic your business receives, you may wish to have this performed periodically as well.
Maintenance Disinfection: This is the disinfection steps you would be taking between customers or at the end of each day. We recommend thinking through your customer and staff flows to determine what surfaces are touched regularly and to then implement a disinfection plan to address these surfaces regularly. Ideally, you would want to disinfect surfaces before multiple people have an opportunity to come in contact with it. Some common surfaces to consider are sales counters, credit card machines, phones, door knobs, light switches, computers, bathrooms, waiting areas, etc. Once put in place, these disinfection plans should be posted for employees to follow.
We hope this helped you formulate a plan to reopen your business! If we can help with your Infectious Disease Disinfection needs, please do not hesitate to Contact Our Offices!
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