The world is still reeling from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Businesses have shut down, economies have tanked, and millions of people have lost their jobs. It’s been a tough few months for everyone, to say the least. But as we slowly emerge from this global health crisis, businesses need to take a long hard look at what they can do to help prevent another pandemic from happening.
There are some simple steps that businesses can take to help reduce the spread of illness and promote a healthy workplace. By implementing some or all of these measures, businesses can play a role in protecting their employees, customers, and communities from the next global health crisis.
Can businesses survive the next pandemic?
Businesses can survive the next pandemic, but it’s going to take more than just luck. They must be proactive in their approach to preventing the spread of illness. They should have plans and procedures in place so they can stay operational even if a global health crisis strikes.
Here are some ways businesses can help prevent another pandemic:
Encourage employees to get vaccinated
One of the simplest and most effective ways to prevent the spread of disease is to ensure that as many people as possible are vaccinated against common illnesses. Many businesses are already requiring their employees to get vaccinated against influenza, and there’s no reason why this couldn’t be extended to other diseases as well.
Promote good hygiene practices
Hand-washing is one of the best ways to prevent the spread of illness, so it’s important to promote proper hand-washing techniques in the workplace. Employees should wash their hands regularly with soap and water after coming into contact with high-touch surfaces such as door handles, keyboards, and phones. Businesses should also provide their employees with ample opportunities to wash their hands throughout the day by placing hand sanitizer dispensers in strategic locations around the workplace.
Have your workplace professionally cleaned and disinfected
Another way to help prevent the spread of disease is to ensure that your workplace is clean and free of germs. This means having your workplace professionally cleaned and disinfected regularly. Businesses should also make sure that high-touch surfaces like door handles, keyboards, and phones are wiped down with disinfectant wipes or an EPA-approved disinfectant cleaner daily.
Hiring professional cleaning services has many benefits. Not only will it help keep your workplace clean and free of germs, but it will also give your employees peace of mind knowing that their workplace is being cleaned by professionals. They also don’t need to do the work themselves; they can just focus on doing their jobs and keeping their workstations clean.
Implement flexible sick policies
Flexible sick policies are essential for preventing the spread of illness in the workplace. Employees should not feel like they have to come to work when they’re sick; doing so only puts themselves and their coworkers at risk of getting sick. Businesses should encourage their employees to stay home when they’re sick and consider offering paid time off or work-from-home arrangements as incentives for employees to stay home when they’re unwell. When an employee calls in sick, be sure to disinfect any common areas they may have used before leaving for the day (e.g., break room refrigerator handle, office phones, etc.).
Have a pandemic plan in place
No one knows when the next pandemic will hit, but businesses need to be prepared. A pandemic plan will help ensure that your business will continue operating even if a significant portion of your workforce is out sick. Your plan should include contingency plans for things like reduced staffing levels, working remotely, and supply chain disruptions.
Be prepared to make changes quickly
The key to surviving a pandemic is being able to adapt quickly. Things can change very rapidly during a pandemic, so businesses need to be prepared to make changes on the fly. This might mean changing your hours of operation, switching to an all-remote workforce, or making other changes as needed.
The bottom line is that businesses need to be prepared for the next pandemic. By taking steps to promote good hygiene practices, professional cleaning services, and flexible sick policies, businesses can help prevent the spread of disease and keep their employees healthy. Having a pandemic plan in place will also help ensure that your business is able to continue operating even if a significant portion of your workforce is out sick. And finally, being prepared to make changes quickly is essential for surviving a pandemic.