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Reopen your business successfully - Tips to sanitize and prevent spread of COVID-19

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Reopen your business successfully - Tips to sanitize and prevent spread of COVID-19

Here’s some suggestions to follow now that you’re beginning to open your business. Cleaning, disinfecting, hand hygiene, and social distancing are critical to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

As all of us know, the ideology of business as usual has changed forever. The safety of your employees and your customers is of utmost importance. All of us will be paying much closer attention to sanitation and hygiene in all aspects of our lives. Businesses that can visibly prove they’re on top of all aspects of providing a safe, clean, germ free environment are the ones that will thrive. Safety first, has never been more important than it is now.

How do I reopen safely?

As businesses reopen, this is the number one question in everyone’s mind. Following best practices, including those found below, will help your business open safely.

  • Create, implement, and communicate your policies in writing to your employees and customers. Don’t be afraid to have these measures on display. Being proactive, will give your customers confidence they’re safe in your business. If they feel safe, they will return often
  • Include regularly scheduled cleaning and disinfection at determined intervals. Have charts visible that sanitation staff can initial at required times
  • High touch surfaces should be cleaned and disinfected around the clock
  • Provide tissues and sanitary items for customers to use if necessary
  • Make sure soap, paper, and hand sanitizer are in good supply and are readily available.

Here’s some ideas to consider as you draft your policies and procedures to protect your employees and customers from the spread of COVID-19.

  • Identify your safe behavioral practices. Determine how you’ll implement and communicate these social distancing measures. Increasing minimum physical space to at least six feet will require planning.
  • Limiting capacity may be required.
  • Discourage hand shaking and closed space meetings.
  • Consider order ahead or call ahead ordering to minimize contact.
  • Consider strategies such as curbside pickup where possible.
  • Require employees to stay home when sick.
  • Create a policy to disinfect equipment after each use.
  • Encourage frequent, 20 second duration, hand washing.
  • Provide PPE such as gloves and masks if necessary.
  • Plan for the scenario where one of your employees or a customer is diagnosed with COVID-19.

For detailed guidelines, visit Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation Guidelines.

The state is requiring facilities to use E.P.A. registered disinfectants as part of their guidelines. North Woods has a vast arsenal of these products. We can provide training and proper equipment to help you be safe and successful.

Here’s some general guidelines to follow as you create a protocol to ensure proper sanitation. Our reps, and customer service staff at North Woods, are here to help. We also recommend that you read read Ropening Guidance for Cleaning from CDC here.

  • Determine what needs to be cleaned and how often

    • Surfaces that get touched frequently need to be cleaned and disinfected regularly, at minimum, multiple times a day
      Hard, non-porous surfaces such as door handles & knobs, counter tops, tables, light switches, phones, keyboards, touchscreens, toilets, sinks, faucets, etc., need to be cleaned often throughout the day.
      Product recommendation: Table Top or Mega Quat are excellent Ready to Use Disinfectants. If dilutible is desired, HQD, diluted at 2 oz. per gallon can be used. Please note, the E.P.A. requires a fresh solution be made daily.
    • Restroom Cleaning should be done with increased frequency.
      Product recommendation: Table Top or Mega Quat are excellent Ready to Use Disinfectants. If dilutible is desired, HQD, diluted at 2 oz. per gallon can be used. Please note, the E.P.A. requires a fresh solution be made daily.
    • Chairs, handrails, and other hard surfaces that come into human contact should be disinfected daily.
      Product recommendation: Table Top or Mega Quat are excellent Ready to Use Disinfectants. If dilutible is desired, HQD, diluted at 2 oz. per gallon can be used. Please note, the E.P.A. requires a fresh solution be made daily.
    • Food prep, and serving, surfaces should be cleaned, disinfected, rinsed, then sanitized.
      Special care to ensure foodstuff and soils are removed first, then surface disinfected, must be followed. Surface then needs to be rinsed, followed by an application of a properly diluted E.P.A. sanitizer such as our  San-I-Cide must be applied and allowed to air dry. If a RTU sanitizer is preferred, use Sani Spray
    • Soft, porous surfaces are difficult to sanitize, and will require more effort.
      Product recommendation: Table Top
  • Identify personnel for cleaning. Communicate frequency, preferably in writing, plus provide products as well equipment and PPE.
    • Surfaces that need frequent disinfecting can be burdensome on your cleaning staff and therefore may go undone. Monitoring this will prevent putting your business and your community in jeopardy. A team approach using several employees, along with a checklist indicating frequency, can increase successful implementation.
    • For equipment that needs to be disinfected after each use, inform all users of this requirement. Keeping the cleaning product and associated materials in close proximity helps promote its use. Inform this personnel of where and how to use it.

  • Ensure that paper towels, tissue, and soap dispensers are full and available in restrooms, break rooms, and kitchen areas.
    Product recommendation: North Woods Evergreen or Antibacterial foam soap is excellent for restrooms, while E-2 Foaming Soap is required for kitchens. Providing Derma Foam Hand Sanitizer and Table Top is excellent to promote good hygiene in break rooms.

  • Provide hand sanitizers on counters and on the desks and workspaces
    Product recommendation: Derma Foam Hand Sanitizer or Derma Foam Excel Hand Sanitizer

  • Clean other highly visible areas such as glass doors, windows and floors to boost confidence of your staff and customers
    Product recommendation: North Woods Brilliance for glass and windows and North Woods HQD neutral pH disinfectant for floors.

Communicate your policies, practices and educate your employees

Educating your employees and customers on safe behavioral practices, as well as your sanitation policies - will improve results and increase confidence in your staff and your customers.

  • Use printed posters in the workplace to remind people to frequently wash hands, as well as how to properly wear and remove face masks, if required. You can obtain the printable posters here
  • Provide regular updates to your employees about your policy and any changes to your process
  • Use social media, your website, and other public communication tools to get the word out regarding the measures you’re taking to keep everyone safe.

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