How to Care for your Building During COVID 19

Clean building for COVID-19

In the last few weeks, shelter in place guidelines have been eased in most areas in the country. While it is great to return to some semblance of normalcy, the pandemic is far from over. In fact, at the time of writing, the number of COVID-19 cases in the United States has reached more than 7 million. Of that, 205,000 people have lost their lives to the virus. 

Needless to say, while the guidelines have relaxed, if you run a healthcare facility, shop, or even own a building, you need to remain vigilant and proactive when it comes to the safety and cleanliness of your property. After all, the lockdowns and restrictions are likely to have affected your business. The last thing you want is to endanger your tenants or employee and close down because of a positive case. 

Truth be told, ensuring the cleanliness of a building is no small feat especially if you rent out spaces to various commercial establishments. Facilitating the coordination between all the moving parts is almost a full-time job. Nevertheless, during these trying times, it has to be done. 

Facility Management in the Time of Corona 

It is safe to say that most industries have been affected by the current global crisis. The pandemic has affected all but six countries and it has slowed down the operations of various verticals. Needless to say, pivoting your operations is essential not only to ensure the safety of your occupants but also to keep your business afloat. 

Cleaning and maintenance requirements have gotten more rigorous considering the current situation. As a facilities manager, we understand that it has been challenging to keep up with a long list of changes. Below are some steps that you need to take in order to ensure the safety of your building:

Stay Up to Date with COVID-19 Guidelines

Considering the extent and severity of COVID-19’s impact on most countries in the world, it is unsurprising how most resources have been dedicated to learning more about the virus. The amount of research means that there is no information about COVID-19 almost every day.

As a facilities manager, it is your responsibility to keep yourself updated with new information regarding the coronavirus. Whether it be the best cleaning material or studies that indicate designing a new office space layout, these updates will enable you to pivot and adjust your cleaning strategy to accommodate for the developments.

Develop a Strong Cleaning Program 

As the saying goes, prevention is better than cure. A good cleaning program is your building’s first line of defense against COVID-19. It is essential to create an outline that would tackle everything there is to know about your establishment’s cleanliness. 

Nevertheless, different establishments call for different cleaning standards. It is important for you to develop a program that is tailor-fitted to what you and your occupants need. 

The programs should include schedules, assignments, and restrictions that need to be established in order to keep the building safe. Likewise, it should provide specific information that your tenants might to ensure that their space is upholding the standards. These questions might include but aren’t limited to:

  • How often should you clean your office?
  • What cleaning materials should be used?
  • What is the building’s emergency protocols? 

Limit Occupancy

There are various ways in which COVID-19 is transmitted. However, for the most part, most cases have been a result of contact with a carrier. 

With that said, limiting your building’s occupancy would help halt the spread of the virus. It is best to start with your internal team. If there are tasks that can be accomplished at home, it is a good idea to institute a work from home option. Likewise, you can split your employees into shifts that would limit the number of people in the building at the same time. 

We understand that you can’t necessarily make decisions for your occupants. But nudging them in the direction of skeletal remote work is an option that they can take to minimize the chances of COVID-19 infection. 

Ensure the Health of Your Emergency Systems

Often, even the most valiant of cleaning efforts fail to protect a building from a virus-like COVID-19. As discussed earlier, much about this disease is unknown. You can do your best to implement guidelines, but things can still fall into the cracks. 

Just as it is important to create a cleaning program, it is also a good idea to craft an emergency system that would effectively respond to a confirmed positive case within your building. Doing so would contain the situation.

Check Your HVAC System

The air quality of your building plays a significant role in the spread of COVID-19. After all, the virus is airborne. Faulty and unmaintained HVAC systems can expose the people within your establishment to the pathogen. 

While it might seem counter-productive to spend on HVAC maintenance especially during tough times, you can never be too safe. It is an investment in the health and safety of your tenants –  arguably the lifeblood of your business. Needless to say, it is an investment worth making. 

Provide Cleaning Materials to Your Occupants

One of the easiest and most effective ways to prevent the spread of COVID-19 is through frequent hand washing and sanitation. Recent studies have shown that the use of anti-bacterial soaps and hand sanitizers is enough to combat the disease. 

In order to safeguard your building from the pathogen, it is a good idea to provide sanitizers at every entry point. Moreover, you can implement a more rigorous cleaning schedule for high-touch areas.

Look Into Hiring Professionals to Take Care of Maintenance

When it comes to building management, we understand that there are plenty of moving cogs. Even without the pandemic, making sure that a building is safe for its occupants is difficult enough. In the time of corona, doubly so. 

Thankfully, choosing to work with a commercial cleaning company can take the load off of your shoulders. With the right team, you would gain the peace of mind that your building is safe from COVID-19. 

COVID-19 has put the world at a standstill for several months. Now that establishments are starting to reopen, it is important to set your building up for success. Despite the research, there is still much that is left unknown about the virus. At the end of the day, while the steps above seem innocuous and tedious, it is always best to err on the side of caution.