While restrictions are being lifted in many places, now is not the time to get careless. One setback can send your small business back or put you away for good. Learn some ways you can keep your business safe and prevent the spread of the virus.
What are employees concerned about?
Understandably, many employees express concerns about their health. According to Marsh & McLennan Companies, 9 out of 10 employees are concerned about COVID-19 and 4 out of 10 employees think this can affect not only the work culture but also the everyday work functions.
Screening patients and taking the temperature of clients and employees is a given, but some employees can walk around the answers given to them in the screening questionnaire, like being around anyone who has tested positive for coronavirus.
What should business owners be concerned about?
What happens if one or more of your employees get sick?
In most cases, you won’t actually need to shut down your business, according to CDC guidelines. However, you should prepare to close off any areas used for prolonged periods of time by the infected person.
The CDC recommends waiting 24 hours before disinfecting the area to reduce the risk of other employees being exposed to respiratory droplets. If you can’t wait 24 hours, at least wait as long as possible before cleaning.
Along with cleaning and disinfecting surfaces, you should figure out which employees may have also been exposed to the virus — so they can take additional precautions, according to the CDC.
If one of your employees is confirmed to have COVID-19, you should inform other team members of their possible exposure, while still maintaining confidentiality as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
Employees Working from Home?
Of course, losing a member of your team for up to 14 days while they quarantine will be a challenge — especially if the infected employee provides valuable services to keep your business running.
If your employee is infected but is only experiencing mild symptoms, you could consider allowing them to work from home for up to 14 days while they recover — if their job duties can be performed from home. This option can help you continue business operations while still keeping your staff and customers safe.
For example, if your office manager is sick, your business may struggle if they aren’t able to manage payments or send out bills. You’ll need easy software to manage from any location, while your manager works from home.
With Denefits innovative software, your manager can conveniently keep track of payments, billing, and income while working remotely.
It’s also important to keep clear communication open between you and any employees working from home. If they are feeling well enough to work, start off by setting clear expectations about their work duties while they’re quarantined. Make sure they track their tasks and time so that you won’t lose more money paying an employee to work from home if they aren’t performing their duties as needed. If you can provide a work laptop or desktop for them to use, you can stay connected by holding regular video calls through Zoom or Google Chats.
Here are some easy tips to keep COVID-19 away from the workplace:
- Provide peroxide rinses or other antibacterial mouthwashes to reduce the viral load. Make sure your workplace is clean, sanitized, and ready for staff and clients.
- Check that the ventilation system is clean and the water system is safe to operate.
- Ensure that common work areas like break rooms and meeting rooms have signs to encourage everyone to stay six feet apart from each other to avoid any possible contact or spread of the virus.
- Require everyone to wear face masks — both employees and customers.
- If possible, only allow a limited amount of customers into your business at a time.
- Take the temperature of every employee or customer through the ear canal or on their forehead.
- Use contactless payments for any transactions. This way, you can accept payments from customers without having to handle any cards, cash, or physical contact. With Denefits, you can easily process contactless payments digitally. Denefits No Fee Payment Processing additionally gives you the choice to share or pass on the transaction fee to your customer, to save more money for your business.
- Go paperless with e-Bills. You can reduce further spread of the virus by sending digital invoices to your customers through Denefits automated billing. Not only does this lessen the risk of transmitting the virus — you also can save time and money by not sending out bills through the mail.