The NHS has warned that we may be about to experience the worst flu season in history, with hospitals across the country predicted to struggle under the pressure.
Whether you’re travelling into work each morning on public transport or attending your child’s assembly in a cramped sports hall, it’s sometimes difficult to avoid catching other people’s germs during the winter months. However, there are ways to minimise the risk of infection, particularly in the workplace. Here are just a few ways to reduce the spread of flu during winter and keep your employees healthy and present!
Encourage people to stay at home at the first sign of flu symptoms
Illness is often spread very quickly in work environments due to employees’ fear of getting in trouble for taking time off. Some workers worry that they’ll be accused of lying about their illness or shamed for not being sick enough to warrant at day at home. Although this fear can successfully prevent staff members from taking unnecessary sick days, it can negatively affect those who are genuinely ill and increase the likelihood of other employees falling sick.
If you don’t already have a flexible working policy, now could be a good time to introduce one.
With flu season fast approaching, reassure employees that it’s okay to take time off if necessary. If workers are showing early signs of illness but they don’t feel unwell enough to spend the day in bed, request that they work from home rather than bring their germs into the workplace.
Create a ‘touch point’ cleaning schedule
In order to minimise the spread of flu during winter, certain areas within the workplace need to be cleaned more frequently than others. Employees are most likely to get ill if they touch objects that have been contaminated by another person’s germs. These germ hot spots or ‘touch points’ can include:
- Door handles
- Elevator buttons
- Escalator handrails
- Stair railings
- Bathroom taps
- Coffee machines
- Fridge handle
Create a ‘tough point’ cleaning schedule and ensure that these surfaces are disinfected on a regular basis.
Introduce hand sanitiser throughout the office
If hand sanitiser dispensers are good enough for hospitals and medical centres, they’re good enough for your workplace. Attaching sensor operated dispensers to the walls of your premises can help to encourage employees to keep their hands clean. If dispensers are impractical, place containers in kitchens, break rooms, offices and any other frequently-used areas.
Embrace professional cleaning equipment
Take standards up a notch by embracing professional cleaning equipment. Not only can industrial cleaning tools stop germs in their tracks, they can also save you time and money.
If you’d like to find out how professional cleaning tools can transform your business and reduce absenteeism during flu season, please get in touch with the team at Clean Sweep.