Is your business prepared for the COVID-19 pandemic?
Here is a starter list of six things you should include in your business preparedness plan.
1. Absenteeism will be high due to illness or refusal to come to the workplace out of fear. Gather your key employees in accounting, sales, marketing, manufacturing, and management and develop a work-from-home strategy.
2. Offer your employees who must come into the plant a safe environment. Hire a sterilization team to scrub the plant’s exposed surfaces every day. A bleach/water solution will kill all pathogens in the workplace. Be sure to have plenty of N95 masks on hand for each employee. Clean all HVAC vents thoroughly. Bring in portable, commercial grade UV air filters and place them around work areas.
3. Establish an in-house clinic with a full-time RN or LPN. As this pandemic spreads, hospitals will be overwhelmed and understaffed. Victims of COVID-19 must be identified and treated immediately. A mobile clinic parked outside your office building, or a designated emergency treatment area within your plant will promote confidence.
4. There isn’t going to be a vaccine for COVID-19 available for probably 12 months or more. Your best shot at survival will be to not be infected in the first place. Good hygiene practices must be performed. Purchase alcohol based hand sanitizer and hand it out freely to employees. Encourage them to not shake hands and to keep their distance from others.
5. Do not allow immune-compromised employees, or employees with any type of immune disorder to come into the workplace. A special care plan for these employees should be developed that includes self-quarantine.
6. Develop a secure, confidential website that allows all employees to read the latest company news and action items, and allow employees to contribute news to the website to keep everyone informed.
The first pandemic wave will probably last about 90 days. You’ll need medical supplies, plenty of soap, potable water, disinfectant, emergency power for those days when electricity will fail, and someone to monitor, gather, and disseminate local pandemic news to your employees. This pandemic will have a huge negative impact on the economy. Those businesses that prepare now will suffer the least.