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Tricia Dunlap, Esq.
~3 minute read

Reopening Your Business After Coronavirus

There are four issues that every business owner needs to consider as you prepare to reopen after the COVID-19 crisis. We’ll talk about two in this post and then in the next post, we’ll talk about the other two issues.

1. Operational Controls

First, let’s talk about operational controls. These are the kinds of changes that you can make to your business environment that will not rely on any kind of employee behavior or habits. So these are things that deal with the systems and the infrastructure in your business. You need to step back and think about how your business operates from an infrastructure standpoint. Perhaps you have a common area where employees in the past have gathered. You need to revisit that common area and think about removing the furniture altogether, so that people can’t gather there, or at the very least separating that furniture, so that it meets CDC guidelines on social distancing.

Also consider issues whether or not adding certain kinds of infrastructure, such as the Plexiglas shields that we see in grocery stores that protect customers from cashiers might be helpful to protect your employees either from one another or from the customer and employee engagement. Think about the physical space of your business and operational changes you can make that increase employee health and safety.

Other things you might consider when reopening your business after coronavirus are things like splitting a shift, so that you reduce the amount of time that everyone is the same
building at the same time. So anything that you can do to change either the systems or the physical structure of your business setting, so that the physical spacing guidelines of the CDC are adhered to, will be helpful.

2. Administrative Controls

Secondly, you can implement some administrative controls. And these are programs and policies that do rely on people changing their habits. So perhaps it might be rigorous hand washing, or implementing a temperature checking program, or adding new signs throughout your workplace that remind people of the behavior changes that you are expecting. Plan and consider what kinds of administrative controls you need to implement. Then you need to train, retrain and then vigorously enforce your expectations around these controls.

You need to also carefully consider some of the downstream effects of decisions around these controls. So for instance, if you’re gonna implement temperature checking, then you need to step back and think about what that actually is going to look like. Are you gonna check people’s temperatures before they come into the building or after? Will that be on the clock or off the clock? All of these are considerations that you need to be factoring into your decisions. So those are the first two kinds of issues that you need to think through as you prepare to reopen. This is part one, in part two we will consider personal protective equipment and also the kinds of policies you need to have in place.

So stay tuned, roll on over to part two and if this post was helpful, please comment down below or if you have questions.

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