With restrictions beginning to ease and the situation looking much brighter, business owners will be counting down the days till they can reopen and start welcoming customers back. Businesses will be eager to get back to normal, but it is essential to understand that it will not be “business as usual” as the pandemic is not yet over and it is still hugely important to take steps to protect public health. Here are steps to Get Ready to Reopen Your Business After Lockdown.
First, you will need to carry out a risk assessment for your current setup to determine what steps need to be taken to create a COVID-secure work environment. If you were open previously then you will already have a clear idea of what this will entail, but if not there is HSE guidance on carrying out a risk assessment.
There may then be changes that you have to make to create a safe work environment. These might include:
- Changing layouts so that social distancing can be maintained
- Installing physical barriers
- Closing communal spaces
- Limiting the number of people inside at one time
- Hand washing stations
You may also need staff to wear PPE while at work depending on the industry that you are working in (face masks will be the minimum requirement). This means that you need to make sure that you have sufficient PPE available for staff, that they know how to wear it and that there are rules in place.
Having a COVID-secure work environment and training staff is important, but it is very easy for this all to be forgotten in the moment and customers/clients will also need reminding. The best way to do this is with posters and banners – this will act as a constant reminder and inform people on how they can staff safe and protect public health.
Employee Health Monitoring
You also need to encourage staff to come forward if they are feeling unwell and encourage remote working where possible. Stay up-to-date on the latest developments, particularly when it comes to testing and COVID passports as this is a situation that is constantly changing.
Hopefully, this information will come in useful and help you to open your business with confidence. You will want to do all that you can to get back to normal, but it is important to understand that it is not business as usual (yet!) and you still need to be vigilant, cautious and intelligent.