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Opening your workshop? Here’s what you need to know.

Workshops need to adopt key protocols to ensure they are business-ready when lockdown lifts.

Are you ready to open your workshop? Customer needs have changed significantly during the five weeks of lockdown, and trust has become more important than ever as people seek to ensure they deal with entities that can keep them safe while providing great service.

First things first: before you open your workshop, it is critical that you have a risk strategy in place and you ensure your workshop is ready for business.  We are preparing a whole set of Sanitisation Protocol posters for your workshops which will be sent to you by the end of the week. You can print these out and laminate the posters. They are a great reminder for everyone. There are a variety of different options but here is a short summary of each: 

Staff protocols

All staff are required to undergo a temperature register before entering the premises, and may not enter if a temperature of more than 37.6 degrees Celsius is recorded. The key or touchpads of time systems must be disinfected after every physical interaction. From entry, staff must proceed to a sanitisation station and sanitise their hands, and bags must be handed over to a designated person for sanitisation and storage. Employees will then go to their workstation, remaining at least 1,5m away from colleagues. The workstation, including desk, telephone, and other devices must be sanitised before starting work and should be sanitised again before leaving. If employees have to leave their workstations, they must take care not to touch any handles or stair railings. This process must be repeated every time people exit and reenter the building.

Employees are reminded to follow hygiene rules, such as coughing or sneezing into a flexed elbow and throwing away used tissues.

Please note that staff may not share tools, equipment, or workstations; nor should they share food or masks.

Masks must be worn at all times, especially while using public transport, and must be washed and dried daily. Damaged masks must be replaced immediately. Staff must make a concerted effort not to touch anything on their daily commute and must try to stay away from other passengers who are coughing and sneezing.

An example of two of the Sanitation Protocol posters being developed for the business.

Supplier protocols

Guidelines are in place for managing deliveries from suppliers, too. All deliveries must be made in a strictly designated delivery area, which is separate from the general production and administrative area. All suppliers are to be screened before entering the building. All parcels and deliveries must be sanitised, and any pen used during the handover must be disinfected, too. Staff must wash their hands immediately after taking delivery. 

Vehicle protocols

Workshop owners are to follow strict protocols for handling vehicles, too. Please note that all customer vehicles must be sanitised before entering the workplace production area, including the seats, dashboards, exterior door handles and boot lid handles, and should be sanitised once more before being transferred to the next department, focusing on the areas that have been worked on and the driver position. The exterior door handles, seat, steering wheel, and driver side dashboard must be disinfected again. Only one technician should work on the vehicle from the time it enters the production area. The car must be completely sanitised before it is collected by the customer, and should be locked with keys secured. 

Customer protocols

Customers must maintain social distancing, keeping a distance of 1.5m between them.

Customers coming to collect their cars must pass through an entrance sanitiser, and the keys must be sanitised before handover. Only the customer may touch the vehicle. If the car is being delivered to the customer’s home or office, the driver must carry a sanitising kit and must sanitise the driver’s position in the presence of the client. The driver’s seat must also be sanitised if the car is driven for any reason.

Please note that if anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 enters the workplace, the business will be forced to close and all staff will be quarantined.  We know this first month is especially difficult. We trust you are considering a phased-in approach to restarting your business. It’s advisable to invite around 30% of staff back to work at the outset; this not only speaks to social distancing requirements but also eases the pressure of paying a full complement of salaries until the business has gained momentum.