Australia has sprung back to life starting the last week of May when various industries were given the green light to resume business. Perhaps, the drive to flatten the curve was successful as COVID cases have only gone downhill since peaking late March. It’s a win for all Australians!
Though many restrictions were eased and local conditions are currently favorable for business, Australia is still not COVID-free. The threat of a second wave of infection persists, so we shouldn’t let down our guard any day now. Considering the increased human interaction brought by the reopening of businesses nationwide, observing the highest safety measures is non-negotiable. If you’re a business owner, here are 5 things to do before opening your doors for business:
Conduct employee training on COVID Safe Procedures. Aside from reiterating personal hygiene practices and routine cleaning, you can also educate your employees on their leave privileges which can be granted to them if they feel unwell and are required to isolate. Encourage your employees to be transparent with their health issues and to stay at home until they test negative for COVID-19. It would also be helpful if you have a continuity plan, so your business operations are not compromised when an employee calls in sick.
Read the COVID-19 Restriction Checker. The National Cabinet has provided a 3-Step Framework that guides state territories on how to safely move past the baseline and into a less restricted lifestyle. The restrictions which a state chooses to ease depend on its public health situation. Thus, the rules in similar business types may differ from one state to another.
For instance, New South Wales allows up to 50 people in cafes and restaurants while Queensland interstate travel will be permitted and a maximum of 100 people in cafes and restaurants starting from 10th July.
Set up visual safety reminders. People are capable of sanitizing their hands and observing a healthy distance all on their own but it also doesn’t hurt to reinforce these practices through visual cues. You can set up signage outside your storefront to inform your clients about your business’ conditions for entry or stick posters with information on proper hand washing. Inside the store, you can install floor stickers showing what a 4-meter distance looks like.
Assign a health coordinator in every shift. A health coordinator can be placed in-charge of COVID-related issues in the workplace. They can be your point person for keeping contact details of clients (for Health & Beauty businesses) and monitoring symptoms among employees.
Stay committed to observing basic self-protection protocols in the workplace. Implement strict use of personal protective equipment, proper hand washing practices, and physical distancing in the workplace. Perform routine cleaning and make sure to prioritize frequently touched surfaces.
We all had a hand in flattening the curve. Now that we’re slowly moving to the “new normal”, let’s bring with us the same vigilance and regard for public safety.