Coronavirus Update – What if my business remains open during the pandemic?
After Mondays coronavirus update, the Government has not, as of yet, placed a ban on attending some workplaces. Restaurants, pubs, bars and non-essential shops have been asked to close, but other businesses that don’t fall into those categories remain open. Government guidance states, that where possible any staff who can work from home should do so to enable social distancing. If home working is not possible in your industry or place of work, you should remember the following:
- Keep up-to-date and follow all guidance from the Government and World Health Organisation, including hygiene practices, social distancing, and avoiding group activities, and make sure your employees are aware of this and practising all guidelines.
- To ensure social distancing is implemented wherever possible, ensure that employees avoid using non-essential public transport, avoid gatherings and meetings and avoid contact with anyone who is displaying symptoms (i.e. coughing, high temperature). If they do live with or come in contact with anyone infected or showing symptoms, they should self-isolate for 14 days.
High risk or vulnerable employees
Some of your employees maybe classed as at high risk or vulnerable. A list of those classed as this can be found here. The Government has asked these people (via text) to self-isolate for up to 12 weeks.
If for any reason there are vulnerable employees in the workplace, you should put in place stringent measures to protect them, such as:
- removing the employee from a public facing role, minimising contact with others
- offering different shift patterns to ensure the employee can avoid busier public transport times if they do not have their own transport.
- ensuring the employee has a personal supply of PPE, tissues, sanitisers etc
- allowing them to self-isolate and receive sick pay. Information on this can be found here.
Your employees health and well being
To keep up to date with the health and well being of all your employees we recommend the following:
- Nominate someone who’s responsibility it is to keep in touch with all employees and keep notes on everyone, every day.
- Identify key positions which are essential for business continuity and ensure measures are in place to cover these positions in a worst-case scenario.
- Ensure all emergency contact details of employees are up to date.
- Provide plenty of PPE, soap, hand sanitisers and tissues to staff. Have extra quantities of all.
If there is a positive diagnosis of coronavirus in the workplace you must alert all employees and direct them to the NHS website, which lists the symptoms they should look out for. Public Health England (PHE) will likely be in touch with you to identify who the individual has been in contact with and discuss the workplace setup. You should follow all instructions from PHE, they may ask you to close, or it may not be necessary.
If employees do have to self-isolate at short notice, and you have gaps in your business that need filling, or if you just want more advice on how to care for your employees during this time, contact us.
We have temporary workers available to fill shifts in administration, customer service, warehouses and manufacturing.