How to Protect Your Employees from COVID-19

by | May 4, 2020 | businesses, cloth face masks

As the U.S. begins to open back up, CDC recommendations state that it’s critical for business owners to do two things exceptionally well:

  1. Safely reopen your business to the public and your employees, and
  2. Get your business back on track as quickly and efficiently as possible.

To do that, you must have a plan in place to safely reopen your business. Your employees and customers need to feel safe and protected, otherwise, a lawsuit may be in your future.

To protect your employees and prepare your business for a safe and efficient reopening, check out the following CDC-recommended tips.

Appoint a workplace coordinator

Designate an employee to oversee and handle COVID-19 issues and manage their impact on your workplace. This is the ideal scenario for keeping everyone safe and keeping you, the business owner, focused on running your company.

Have this designated employee develop an emergency communications plan with key contacts and back-up contacts, processes for communicating and tracking employee status, and a chain of communications that includes both customers and suppliers.

Share these plans with your employees and make your expectations clear.

Order cloth masks for your employees

The CDC recommends that everyone wear a cloth mask when leaving the house. Some states are even requiring their residents to wear these masks in public.

In the state of Louisiana, John Bel Edwards is considering lifting the stay-at-home order on May 15th. This means that you only have a couple more weeks to order your masks. Be aware that large quantities can take one to two weeks to deliver, so the sooner you get that process started, the more likely you’ll have what you need when the stay-at-home orders are lifted.

We can definitely help you if you need large quantities of cloth face masks. We can process and deliver your bulk cloth mask order in as little as 2 – 3 weeks for blank masks and 3 – 4 weeks for logo imprints.

Re-evaluate your policies

If you have not already updated your employee leave policies, now is the time to do so. These policies should be non-punitive and flexible, allowing for sick employees to stay at home without worrying about their hours or pay getting docked.

Encourage your employees to stay home if they’re sick. Don’t make them fear it. If your employees live in fear of calling in sick, they’re more likely to cover up symptoms, show up to work, and infect everyone else.

If possible, offering flexible work hours for your employees (i.e., staggered shifts) or allowing them to work from home is a great way to establish social distancing policies. If your state requires social distancing, this is a must.

Your leave policies should also include employees that need to care for sick family members or stay home with their children while schools and daycares are closed. Review these new policies with your workers and provide all the necessary information about employee assistance services. Make sure they know your safety protocol like the back of their hands.

Identify essential functions and employees

Should a second wave of COVID-19 hit, we all need to be more prepared the next time around. Identify your essential employees and business functions, like suppliers, logistics, raw materials, subcontractor products/services, and anything else that is required to maintain your daily operations.

Now is the time to devise a plan should there be another disruption in business.

Communication, communication, communication

Speak with your employees about their concerns. When reviewing your new policies with them, ask if anyone has any questions or suggestions. It’s especially important that you take into consideration any feedback given by your employees in the high-risk categories.

Promote sanitation

Supply soap and water, touchless trash cans, hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol, and tissues at your place of work. Make sure that your employees practice frequent handwashing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, and promote sneezing and coughing into elbows.

If social distancing is not able to be implemented, face shields are another great solution for protecting employees from potential exposure to COVID-19. There are bucket hats with face shields, baseball hats or caps with face shields, or headbands with a face shield attached.

Each of these face shield options provide an impermeable barrier between the user and the people they come in contact with, and are ideal for workers who require face-to-face interaction with customers.

Routinely cleaning and disinfecting your workplace is critical for keeping your employees and customers safe. Be sure to focus on areas that are frequently touched, such as handrails, workstations, doorknobs, keyboards, computer mouses, and counters. Discourage sharing of equipment if possible.

We created Quality Face Wear to help get America back to school and work again. We proudly offer bulk quantity purchases of high quality cloth face masks to business owners at exceptionally low prices. But you must get your order in now, to ensure those masks are available when your school or business is able to reopen.