woman wearing PPR and a hard hat

Contributed by ABM

COVID-19 has changed the way we look at building cleanliness and health. Most manufacturing facility managers have had to adapt to the change while maintaining production levels. In the haste to adapt maintenance protocols to accommodate employee and consumer concerns around virus prevention, important aspects may have been missed.

1. How will organizations demonstrate to employees and customers that they’re taking disinfection seriously?

The goal of disinfection is to create a healthier environment for employees and to produce products that are safe for customers. But another aspect of disinfection is making employees feel comfortable coming to work and giving customers peace of mind about the safety of your products.

Visibility and communication are key. For employees, consider using signage and placards to indicate which areas have been disinfected, and when. Customers don’t necessarily understand (or need to know) the finer details of the disinfection program. What they need is assurance that facilities are incorporating best practices from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO), as well as experts in industrial hygiene.

2. How will organizations maintain the supplies, equipment and chemicals needed to reliably disinfect and maintain uptime?

COVID-19 has driven high demand for disinfectants and hand hygiene products. Jan/san professionals know all too well how important it is to maintain a reliable supply chain. 

If teams are unable to disinfect properly due to a lack of supplies, or if employee hand hygiene products are regularly out of stock, it damages the ability to reduce the spread of infection. It also reduces employee faith in a company commitment to their health. As managers plan their disinfection program, they should think about how to keep the right supplies and chemicals in stock, as well. Facility service providers often have the relationships that give them first access to in-demand disinfectants and supplies. Working with a vendor that has strong supply partnerships can ensure they always have the right inventory.

Even if implementing disinfection protocols on the fly, now’s a good time for a reset. Step back and take an assessment of the facility needs and capture any elements that may have been missed.

Article contributed by Lane Williams, vice president of sales at ABM.