Re-opening = Welcome back = Risk Assessment
To all the businesses out there that are re-opening or bringing back employees into the workplace I salute you. It’s about time isn’t it.
Well done and you will know that there are endless preparations that need to be done, anything from checking the premises for structural robustness ie no leaks, no squatters or vermin, nothing gone mouldy, nothing gone bad in fact nothing unexpected at all.
Good, let’s open the windows land get some fresh air in – and maybe even today let’s turn the heating back on (but not at the same time).
Yes, I’ve done it, but how do they know?
You’ve done all the checks, you’ve cleaned everything, disinfected everything, mounted hand sanitizers by every door. You’ve put tape and stickers all over the floor to give people clear guidance on what 2 meters looks like and how to stay safe.
And, importantly it’s not just out front where the customers are, you’ve mitigated risks everywhere throughout your business to keep your staff, yourself and your visitors safe.
But how do your clients and prospects know that you are a “ggod guy”? How do they know how effort, thought, money and time you’ve put into welcoming people back.
This poster designed by the government was intended for you to put up on your wall so if you’ve done it you deserve to be known as “safe and ready”.
As a thoughtful, caring business you should shout it from the rooftops with the government poster: frame it and have inside your door, in your reception/waiting area if you have one, next to your menus in the window and of course, once you have put it up – take photos and include them in you next social media post.
Ok, I didn’t realise this meant me – do I have to do it?
From a legal perspective (and a caring for your workforce perspective), yes, you MUST do a risk assessment and if it’s not something you’ve done before you need to consider every aspect of everything.
Let me give some examples:
1) look at how your people access their workplace (or your dining place or whatever) : do you have stairs, will people pass on the stairs, can you divide them this way and that way to have a one way system? If like most places the stairs are narrow, do you need to advise people to turn their head to the wall when they go past each other? It sounds rude but it’s protecting people and is in your best interests as well as theirs.
2) Equally, if people have desks/tables that are closer than two metres have you thought about screens? Should they be Perspex (plexiglass) or made of something else? For a restaurant a well – designed pull-up banner could look good and do the job. Once installed what’s the cleaning regime: how would you clean them, who’s job or task is it to clean them and at what frequency?
3) The same goes for door handles, toilet seats and anything else that’s shared by other people such as coffee making areas, including the kettle and the kitchen sink.
These are just a few of the many, many things to consider that you probably haven’t thought of but I’m very happy to have a chat with you about your workspace and the working environment that you will be inviting other people into as soon as you are ready.
Good luck and get in touch if you’d like to.