In order to curb the spread of Coronavirus, ‘social distancing’ or ‘physical distancing’ has been introduced as an effective measure to contain the virus. As an employer the responsibility of keeping staff safe has never been higher. Below we outline some simple ways in which you can ensure that physical distancing is adhered to by your frontline staff, and how technology, like facility management and other workplace management software tools, can play a simple and effective role in keeping everyone safe now and when public venues begin to re-open.
HOW TECHNOLOGY CAN HELP FRONTLINE WORKERS STAY SAFE AND PRODUCTIVE WHILE PHYSICAL DISTANCING.
Keep your distance:
In order to keep frontline staff safe, it’s important to introduce policies on physical distancing. The current guidelines suggest that keeping at least two metres, or six feet, away from other people lessens the chances of spreading COVID-19. Train staff to identify what this distance looks like, so that they can ensure that everyone on the team is adhering to the practice and equip the team with the tools they need to maintain a safe distance.
Arm with an app:
Using a simple smartphone app, you ensure that everyone can connect with their colleagues without having to get within close quarters. Not only can an app encourage collaboration while avoiding close quarters contact, a workforce management app can track activity meaning that everyone on the team knows which jobs have been done and where, so they know they know they don’t have to complete them. If an incident crops up then flagging and escalating issues can all be done from the safety of the app, rather than an in-person report.
The safest way to work at the moment is to work from home. When it comes to working on the frontlines this largely isn’t possible, however, using facility management software it is possible for those in managerial positions to oversee operations remotely using dashboards, maps and a frontline workforce management solution. By digitising operations, you can get clear, real-time data into the happenings on your premises meaning that you can make business decisions, resolve any red flags or incidents and support and manage frontline workers remotely.
Embrace the ‘Just In Time’ Approach:
In order to keep frontline workers safe, many employers are operating on a skeleton crew. Using a ‘Just In Time’ approach you can deploy people and resources only when they are needed. By embracing smart sensor technology, it is possible to track all areas of your facility using technology rather than relying on the eyes and ears of your frontline. For instance, if a particular bathroom door has been detected as opening and shutting many times over the space of an hour, and another has remained shut, you can deploy your cleaning staff to just target the bathroom that has been busy, rather than exposing them to another area of the building that doesn’t require as much attention.
Frontline workers thrive on communication. Whether it’s formal meetings before heading out on site or having a quick chat over a cup of tea, the team’s ability to do their jobs well hinges on good communication. In order to allow for safe communication at a time where physical distancing is crucial for the safety of workers, it’s important to introduce some form of workforce management software or facility management app. By highlighting issues, assigning tasks and roles and allowing for discourse on a smartphone app that workers carry in their pockets, managers can ensure that frontline staff don’t miss out on any of the communication while keeping their distance from one another.
Trust the tech:
Using technology like location, sensor data
and other IoT devices to empower frontline workers to get the job done, you can ensure that your staff are committed to specific zones of work. Using a centralised team-based app system, frontline workers can easily see where their colleagues are working and keep their distance accordingly. Managers can also assign tasks to individuals so that frontline workers do not need to cross paths in the course of their duties. If an urgent issue crops up, workers can use incident capture to flag an issue and then managers can assign out actions in such a way to minimise staff contact.
We know it’s not easy out there, but we also know that you are doing everything you can to keep yourselves, your frontline workers and the public safe. We hope these guidelines help you to introduce physical distancing effectively, and to maximise your use of technology to get the #JobDone!