How Businesses Are Implementing the CDC Guidelines to Reopen Safely

by Edgar R. Olivo

As reopening across America is underway, many businesses are left wondering if they are doing enough to follow CDC guidelines to keep their workers and customers safe while making a profit. This is one of the many challenges small businesses will have to overcome soon to regain confidence in the marketplace. The CDC has published guidelines and decision tools to safely reopen for just about every type of public space, including retailers, barbershops, restaurants and entertainment facilities. But the guidelines fall short on how to do them efficiently.

In addition, here is a glimpse of some of the other challenges small-business owners face while they try to reopen:

  • Managers are concerned about making their team feel safe and reduce the risk of litigation.
  • Employees want to feel their employer cares for their safety.
  • Customers want to know what the business is doing to keep them safe.

Working and operating in a safe environment is a shared concern.

In Arizona, the stay-at-home order expired on May 15. Gov. Doug Ducey had extended his original order to that date but outlined a plan for retail stores and other businesses to begin opening sooner. Most businesses are now open under a “Return Stronger” plan. Some worry it was too soon and some worry it was not soon enough.

The CDC’s guidelines are pretty clear when it comes to how to prevent people from getting sick; however, how does that impact efficiency? Can any of these guidelines be streamlined? How are businesses innovating with their investment to reopen safely?

As business owners look at cleaning and disinfecting their public “space,” they should also look at their “pace” in the public “space.” For slower-paced work environments like offices and administrators, sanitation practices are easier to manage; however, faster-paced environments like fast food and retailers require a lot more attention because of the nature of the business.

Here are some of the ways fast-paced work environments are managing their daily cleaning and disinfecting routines:

  • Reducing seating furniture to allow more space for social distancing and reduce cleaning time.
  • Opening or installing automatic entrances to reduce touching doorknobs and cleaning time.
  • Automatic hand sanitizer dispensers for customers and workers.
  • Pen and pencil jars labeled with “clean” and “used” to sanitize later.
  • Wiping credit card swipers after every use with quick sprays.
  • Setting timers for all workers to wash their hands on a set schedule.
  • Hiring or replacing staff with sanitation workers.
  • Posting instructions with CDC rules for customers to implement.

The list can go on, but you get the picture. How is your business innovating with the CDC guidelines?

To dive deep into learning about the CDC’s cleaning and disinfecting guidelines, visit their page here or participate in this FREE virtual training called the Reopen with Confidence Program to help you and your staff become ready to reopen safely.

Edgar Rafael Olivo is a bilingual business educator, economic advisor and contributor for several media outlets. He’s a non-profit executive who is passionate about education. He is certified in finance and data analytics and holds a business degree from Arizona State University.

To see our Spanish-language version of this article, click here.

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