The Covid-19 pandemic has changed a lot about our world, particularly in the way companies do their business. Many consumer are choosing to stay away from businesses to prevent exposure and more companies are allowing their employees to work from home. When it comes to working in warehouses, it’s no different. However, many of your employees will still need to physically do their jobs, which is why it’s important for companies that use warehouses to take the proper steps to ensure the safety and well-being of their employees. The following practices will help you give your warehouse employees peace of mind when they head into work each day.
Review Risk Assessments
While your previous risk assessments may have worked just fine, there’s a new normal so they need to be reassessed by today’s standards. First and foremost, you need to determine how to minimize or eliminate the risk of contracting the virus in your warehouse. This includes reducing the possible routes of transmission that may exist in your current processes. While PPE equipment can help, wherever possible, it’s better to provide Plexiglass partitions and the ability to socially distance wherever possible. Your employees’ input can be an invaluable part of this process. It’s also a good time to review and revamp cleaning processes, using the right cleaning agents, particularly on high-contact surfaces.
Check Supply Chain Safety
In the warehouse industry, it’s not just about your warehouse; it’s also about your supply chain. Talk to your vendors about their own precautions surrounding Covid-19 and make sure they’re taking the appropriate steps as well. Let them know what you’re doing to keep everyone safe and how that applies to their interactions with you. This will prevent more serious discussions down the line if something goes wrong.
Ensure Safety on All Shifts
Many warehouses have fire marshalls and employees trained in first aid to ensure the safety of all workers. When choosing who to furlough or allow to work from home, make sure you have these qualified individuals onsite during each shift. You may be able to reduce their numbers, but there should be someone present on all shifts so those who are still working at your physical location are protected.
Control Goods Going In and Out
Whether you deal with customer returns or it’s simply the delivery process, reducing points of contact is a must. While this isn’t fully possible for warehouses, limiting interactions and putting precautions in place will help keep everyone safer. Social distancing, proper cleaning and protective barriers are just part of this process. You may also have to isolate any goods coming in for 72 hours to ensure they’re free of the virus before going to the next point in the process. Remote drop-off from your supply chain can also be useful in reducing contact points.
Map Out a Response Plan
Even with all the proper precautions in place, someone in your warehouse could test positive at any point. Rather than being surprised and having to scramble to figure out what to do, haivng a response plan in place ahead of time can save a lot of time and money. Remember, one of the best ways to prevent the spread of Covid-19 is contact tracing. Having an effective way to map out where each employee is throughout the day can help make this process easier.