After months of staying at home, restaurants, bars and hotels all over the country are cheering in unison at the prospect of opening up their doors. But in the wake of the pandemic, it’s essential to make the necessary precautions to ensure your premises remain safe, healthy and COVID-free.
Whether you’re a local neighbourhood restaurant or fast-food chain giant, there are plenty of ways to prep your business for a safe return. From sanitising stations and social distancing to floor layouts and shift work, we’ve pulled together some helpful tips and essential buys to ensure your back to work strategy is a complete success.
Follow the social distance rule
Ensure tables, desks, checkouts, meeting rooms and communal areas are appropriately distanced, keeping to the 1.5m social distancing rule. Display floor marks, signs and posters to remind shoppers and staff to keep their distance from each other. You can print out posters for free on the Safe Work Australia website.
Set up sanitising stations
Scatter sanitisers in entrances to encourage people to keep their hands clean and germ-free before they enter the building. The more you have accessible, the more likely it is that people will use them. Display clear guidelines and instructions to make sure they know how to use effectively.
Invest in antibacterial hand wash
Keep bathrooms and kitchens fully stocked with antibacterial hand wash.
Remind your staff and customers how to wash hands correctly with this handy poster. That way you can eliminate the spread of any nasty germs.
As an added touch, place hand creams around staff communal areas to stop skin from drying out.
Encourage staff to clean as they go
Germs and illness are often spread via surfaces, so keep out cleaning wipes and disinfectant along with reminders that staff should clean any surface they’ve come into contact with. Particularly high traffic areas — if staff are sharing desk spaces, kitchen counters, bathrooms and cupboards, encourage everyone to wipe down every surface after use.
Adjust floor layouts
Consider adjustments to the layout of your hospitality space and your workflows to enable employees and customers to keep at least 1.5 metres apart.
You can achieve this by spreading out furniture, removing displays, restricting pathways to increase distancing, or using floor and/or wall markings and signage to encourage 1.5-metre spacing.
Monitor the total number of people within the shopping centre to ensure it does not exceed maximum occupancy limits. Taking a customers temperature can be a prudent step to show customers that the venue is taking measurements to ensure staff and customers are in a safe environment.
Stagger start times and organise shifts
Stagger start, finish and break times where appropriate. Consider separating workers into dedicated teams with each team working the same shift or in a particular area and having access to their own meal areas or break facilities.
Provide protective equipment
Avoid close contact where possible
Avoid close contact with staff or patients who are unwell with cold or flu-like symptoms. Anyone with symptoms should stay home, without exception. Instruct staff to inform management if they have been in close contact with a person who has COVID-19 or has been tested for COVID-19.
Encourage contactless payment
Avoid cash transactions. Encourage customers to use contactless payment instead.
Keep track of clients
Keep contact information of clients up to date (including walk-ins) to assist health authorities if contact tracing is required.
Increase cleaning schedule
Improve professional cleaning and disinfecting procedures within the store to reduce the occurrence of germs and bacteria. Make sure appropriate signage is displayed throughout the retail space, invest in powerful cleaning disinfectants and increase the frequency of your professional cleaning schedule.