How to Avoid Pathogens in the Office

Woman wearing a mask while working
The new normal is here. How do you keep your staff safe?

There is no denying how much of an eye-opener the current global pandemic has been. This crisis has not only brought to light the lapses in the healthcare system but also emphasized the importance of education and information. 

Your company’s first line of defense in tackling COVID-19 head-on is through proper information dissemination. It is easier to deal with an enemy if you know who the enemy is. 

At its core, pathogens are at the heart of the spread of not only COVID-19 but also every other type of sickness. Pathogens are defined as any organism that can cause disease. There are several types of pathogens – the most common ones being viruses, bacteria, fungi, and parasites.  

The cure for each pathogen differs. However, for the most part, preventing their spread, especially in the workplace, rings true for each type. As a business owner or a manager, it is your responsibility to keep your employees safe from all types of risks including microscopic ones. Knowing this potential threat is the first step in protecting your workers. Below are some tips on how you can avoid the spread of pathogens in your office space:

Impose Stringent Social Distancing and Safety Guidelines 

There are plenty of other pathogens aside from COVID-19. However, this specific strain of coronavirus currently has no cure. Your best recourse is to draw up measures to prevent you and your staff from being infected. 

Social distancing and safety rules depend on the area your office is located in. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention or CDC, it is advised to keep individuals at least 6 feet apart. When an employee is exhibiting symptoms, they should be sent home to avoid contact with their coworkers. If at all possible, provide a means for your workers to accomplish their tasks at home. 

Before sharing the guidelines with your employees, it is best to consult the recommendations of your local government. Once the details are clear, make sure that all of your workers have access to the list of guidelines. In this time of social distancing, opt to send a mass email. 

Schedule Periodical Sanitation  

Your employees are just as worried about their safety as you are. Imposing stricter a cleaning schedule would allow them to focus on their tasks with peace of mind. 

Common areas should be sanitized at least once every two (2) hours. This is a full-time job that might require the help of cleaning professionals. In general, here are some surfaces that need periodic cleaning:  

  • Doorknobs  
  • Hallway floors  
  • Printer and equipment buttons  
  • Computer peripherals  
  • Drawer and cabinet handles  
  • Wall and remote switches  
  • Faucets and sinks  

All products or supplies delivered in the office must be sanitized outside of the premises to avoid contaminating the workplace. This can be done through disinfectant misting or by simply wiping the materials with a damp sanitizing cloth. 

Employ the Help of Safety Officers  

As a business owner, it is understandable to have plenty of tasks on your plate. Between keeping your company afloat and boosting employee morale, there are only so many things you can do. You don’t want to risk, safety tasks to slip through the cracks. 

At this time, hiring a safety officer or even just consulting with one is a good course of action. Safety officers are responsible for overseeing the safety of employees in the workplace. They are experts in their field and their knowledge can help prevent the spread of any pathogens. 

One of their roles is to make sure that everyone entering the office is healthy and not exhibiting any symptoms. They are tasked to check your employee’s temperature using an infrared thermometer aiming at the forehead and offer a spray of disinfectant to their hands. 

Your safety officers should also monitor the overall cleanliness of your office. They are responsible for making sure that everyone is abiding by the social distancing rules and health safety guidelines. 

Create a booking system  

There are certain industries wherein remote work simply isn’t possible. If your company deals with customers on a day to day basis, the spread of pathogens in the workplace is even more likely. 

To ensure the safety of everyone while preserving the convenience for your customers, create a booking system. This strategy will help your customers know when they are scheduled to come to your office for important transactions. They won’t have to line up outside your office exposed to any threats. Moreover, having a booking system would keep the headcount in your office in check. 

With that said, a good booking system should be easy to use. To develop an effective one online, it might be high time to tune-up your company’s website and contact web developers to design a user-friendly system. It is also a good idea to set-up a hotline where customers can make appointments. 

While it could be costly to create a new system for your company’s transactions, these improvements can translate beyond the current pandemic. So it is best to think of your new booking system as long-term investments instead of an emergency precaution. 

Providing Safety Materials to Your Employees 

In light of the pandemic, many companies are upgrading their safety equipment in order to protect their employees. Below is a checklist of upgrades that you should consider: 

  • Install disinfecting floor mats in front of the office door.  
  • Install a disinfectant misting booth outside of your office.  
  • Distribute face shields, masks, and hand sanitizers to your employees.  
  • Offer a door to door shuttle service for your employees.  
  • Hire professional cleaners specialized in sanitization.  

Your employees are your company’s best assets. The upgrades above are an investment in keeping your best assets safe protected, and productive. Sure, it is an expense but it is expenditure worth making. 

Truth be told, nobody saw the pandemic coming. It is understandable to be daunted by all the changes necessary in order to keep everyone safe.

Nevertheless, it is your responsibility to adjust to the situation at hand. Thankfully, there are cleaning professionals that want to ensure the safety of your employees as much as you do. Contact us today to learn more about our cleaning services. Let us help you usher your team into the new normal.