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The Best and Most Effective Ways to Enforce Social Distancing in the Office

The Best and Most Effective Ways to Enforce Social Distancing in the Office

Are you stuck trying to comply with social distancing rules according to government directives regarding the reopening of businesses? 

Well, you know what? We’re in this together!

In these uncertain times, businesses are struggling to stay afloat, let alone comply with government directives. From the blue-chip corporate companies to the local retail stores down the street, the COVID-19 pandemic has hit every business hard.

With the rate of infections rising daily, hardly a day passes without several businesses shutting down, either temporarily or permanently. 

Most businesses have closed down due to the prevailing financial implications caused by the pandemic, while others have been forced to shut down for flouting COVID-19 regulations.

Governments around the world continue to advise businesses to enforce various mitigation strategies in their workplaces. Failure to comply may force these businesses to close.

The good news is that this does not have to be you!

One of the most effective mitigation strategies in the fight against COVID-19 is social distancing. As a way of curbing the spread of the disease, social distancing requires everyone to keep a safe space between themselves and others.

Social distancing simply means staying away from crowded spaces, skipping social gatherings, and minimizing physical contact with people.

To avoid your firm shutting down prematurely, you need to take action by investing in tools that can help secure your facility or workspace from the effects of COVID-19.

In essence, social distancing should be an integral part of your firm’s risk assessment as far as creating a secure working environment is concerned.

Moreover, you should adhere to social distancing regulations as recommended by the relevant authorities. This will ensure that your workplace is safe for your employees as well as your clients.

In this article, we discuss the best ways to enforce social distancing in the workplace. We also examine common social distancing mistakes that businesses should avoid during the reopening. 

Here’s an outline of what you should expect:

1. Social Distancing Guidelines for the Reopening of Businesses

#1: Why revising working hours will save your business

#2: How using signage can help remind people to maintain their distance

#3: Why training employees regarding proper hygiene practices, is a life-saver

#4: What you need to know about cleaning and sanitizing hard surfaces

#5: What you need to do to track interactions in the workplace

#6: Why limiting movement in the workplace is important

#7: The secret to working safely amid a pandemic

#8: The number one reason why sick days are good

#9: Why every business should install sanitation stations before reopening

#10: The actual benefit of using real-time data for mitigating COVID-19 risk

2. Social Distancing Mistakes Businesses Should Avoid

#1: Assuming social distancing will be easy

#2: Not investing in the right safety tools and equipment

#3: Not limiting non-essential movements

#4: Ignoring government health and safety directives

#5: Allowing 100% occupancy

  1. Social Distancing Guidelines for Reopening of Businesses

#1: Why revising working hours will save your business

Even though the economy is opening up and things are slowly getting back to normal, it won’t be business as usual as far as your working hours are concerned.

COVID-19 guidelines demand that businesses must reserve specific hours for serving the most vulnerable populations, such as the elderly and people with underlying conditions.

This will ensure that your service areas are not overcrowded, and you can enforce social distancing regulations better.

When your clients notice you care about their health, it is highly likely that they will stick with you in the good times, as well as in the bad times. This feel-good factor could have a ripple effect on your business and you will be able to land your dream clients easily.

#2: How using signage can help remind people to maintain their distance

Although we are in the middle of a pandemic, sometimes it is so easy for people to forget to follow social distancing rules. After all, adhering to these strict safety measures requires a lot of getting used to.

But you know what?

You can easily remind people to maintain their distance by using signage. The recommended distance between individuals is 6 feet or 2 meters. However, most people choose to ignore this simple directive, subsequently risking the lives of everyone around them.

By using large signs and posters with bold text, you can convey the message easily and conveniently without appearing harsh.

If possible, you can also use floor tape to create designated work areas so that everyone knows where they should stand or sit, while maintaining their distance.

#3: Why training employees regarding proper hygiene practices, is a life-saver

Some of the routines we take for granted often come back to haunt us later. For instance, most people ignore simple tasks, such as washing their hands, cleaning their workspaces, and sanitizing their tools of trade.

However, these simple tasks could make the difference in ensuring your workplace is COVID-secure. Considering this, you should make every effort to train all your staff regarding proper hygiene practices.

Start by encouraging your workers to wash their hands for at least 21 seconds using soap and running water every time after touching handles or surfaces. Do not compromise on this as the existence of your business depends on it! 

#4: What you need to know about cleaning and sanitizing hard surfaces

Recent research on COVID-19 shows that droplets from an infected person may fall on hard surfaces or objects and survive for up to 72 hours or even longer. Touching objects, such as doorknobs and countertops can put you and your staff at greater risk of contracting the virus.

With this in mind, it is important to clean and sanitize all hard surfaces, knobs, light switches, faucets, and handles at the earliest opportunity, to safeguard your workplace and protect your clients.

For the best results, the CDC recommends disinfectants that are EPA-registered, alcohol-based wipes, and sanitizers that contain at least 70% alcohol.

#5: What you need to do to track interactions in the workplace

Social distancing is not just about keeping a safe distance from other people. It is also about tracking interactions to make it easier to trace any new infections in case any of your workers contract the virus.

Tracking the interactions between your employees and customers enables you to establish who was where at what time. This will come in handy if you need to isolate suspected victims and mitigate any risks that might arise.

However, to track interactions, you need to invest in tools such as smartspace

As the name implies, smartspace is a social distancing device that allows you to track interactions and enforce social distancing rules in the workplace. The device triggers a warning when someone gets too close to another person.

#6: Why limiting movement in the workplace is important

Limiting the movement of people in your workplace is a great way of enforcing social distancing rules. It ensures that only a few selected individuals access a designated area at a particular time. Movement restrictions should apply to both your staff and your clients.

Ideally, you should limit movement in high-traffic areas, such as entrances, corridors, hallways, walkways, and turnstiles. You should also discourage your staff from using lifts at the same time to avoid congestion.

You can also restrict movement by discouraging non-essential trips within the building and between sites.

#7: The secret to working safely amid a pandemic

Social distancing guidelines can be hard to follow depending on your industry. For instance, enforcing social distancing in a factory setting can be difficult since manufacturing requires nearly all employees to collaborate and work onsite.

This has forced many companies to suspend operations due to the challenges in fully complying with social distancing directives. 

Fortunately, you do not have to shut down your business because of this! We have a secret that will allow your employees to work safely amid the pandemic, while your business remains open, even during these hard times.

Instead of your employees working face-to-face, you should encourage them to work side-by-side or back-to-back.

#8: The number one reason why sick days are good

Did you know that sick leave is the right of every employee, even though it affects the productivity of your business?

Every year, businesses lose up to 15 working days per employee due to sickness absenteeism. The numbers are set to rise this year due to the pandemic, and could translate to millions in losses depending on the size of your company.

Interestingly, sick leave can be good for your business, particularly during this period of distress. 

You should not permit any employee displaying COVID-19 symptoms, such as coughing or sneezing to come to the office. Instead, ask them to take sick leave to protect other staff members and clients.

#9: Why every business should install sanitation stations before reopening

In these uncertain times, installing sanitation stations along with temperature-taking facilities in your workplace is now a necessity, rather than a luxury.

Social distancing might not provide sufficient protection against the virus. You need to install sanitation stations to ensure that your employees are germ-free from the moment they come to work.

Temperature-checking will also help you to identify employees that need to be isolated in case they display symptoms of the disease.

Most importantly, you should purchase a social-distancing device like smartspace to ensure your staff maintain a safe distance from each other in the designated work areas.

#10: The actual benefit of using real-time data for mitigating COVID-19 risks

Access to real-time data regarding your employees’ whereabouts can go a long way to mitigate the risks revolving around COVID-19. smartspace is undeniably the only social distancing gadget that will provide you with real-time data on the movements and interactions of your employees

This innovative device provides device-to-device tracing and tracking interaction to safeguard your workforce against contracting infectious diseases ranging from flu to COVID-19.

Also, smartspace is not a pandemic-only gadget. You can use it for other traceability purposes, saving your business hundreds of dollars in risk assessment and disaster preparedness.

2. Social Distancing Mistakes Businesses Should Avoid

#1: Assuming social distancing will be easy

Let’s face it. Most business owners assume social distancing will be easy. After all, you just need to ask your employees to stay 6 feet apart while working, right? Well, it’s easy in theory but difficult to execute.

You need to make a few adjustments, such as converting communal washrooms into single bathrooms or only allowing one-way traffic in corridors and hallways. In the end, all these measures require the right tools for effective implementation.

#2: Not investing in the right safety tools and equipment

No one said fighting COVID-19 in the workplace would be easy. If you want to avoid the forced closure of your facility immediately after reopening, you must comply with the compulsory control measures by investing in the right safety tools and equipment.

#3: Not limiting non-essential movements

Allowing your employees or even your clients to move freely from site to site or within the building is a recipe for disaster. Yo never know who has the virus, and allowing free movement can jeopardize the safety of your workplace. 

#4: Ignoring government health and safety directives

Enforcing some of the social distancing directives might be hard, but with the right plan, you’ll have no problem adhering to these measures. You can start by posting signage to remind everyone to keep their distance. You can also use floor tape and provide all visitors with face masks to reduce the risk.

If you ignore government directives, you not only risk mandated closure but also risk exposing your staff and customers to the virus.

“The nail that sticks out farthest gets hammered the hardest.” – Patrick Jones

#5: Allowing 100% occupancy

As much as businesses are now reopening and things are getting back to “normal,” you should not allow 100% occupancy at any time. The maximum should be 50-75% depending on the size of your space, otherwise enforcing social distancing will become a huge challenge.

Now that you know everything about social distancing in the office, what’s next?

Well, it’s time to take action by investing in tools that will allow you to enforce control measures to the letter!

smartspace is a gadget that promises to make your life easier, while rendering your workplace safe and secure from the effects of COVID-19! 

Go for it today and let us know how it goes! 

Remember:

 “We are in this together – and we will get through this, together.” – Antonio Guterres

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