5 Tips to Prevent Flu and Illness in the Workplace
Winter brings with it more hazards for our workplaces, including a higher risk of getting sick. This cold and flu season, ServiceMaster is here to help you stop illness in its tracks before it spreads through your office. Here are five things you can implement in your facility to keep everyone happy and healthy this winter.
Start or increase professional cleaning and disinfecting
No matter the time of year, it’s important to make sure your facility is safe for employees, customers, and visitors. Professional janitorial services and full disinfecting of your office can help prevent the spread of illness in the workplace. Today’s electrostatic technology easily disinfects large areas faster than other methods and helps you stay protected longer.
High-contact areas, like elevators, doorknobs, and more, need to be frequently cleaned to help curb illness this cold and flu season. Full office cleanings are particularly important after cases of infectious diseases.
Promote good self-hygiene and hand-washing
Provide reminders to practice hygiene and hand-washing in common areas as well as in restrooms and other high-use areas of your facility. Here are some good hygiene tips you can promote in your office with educational signs, emails, etc.:
- Cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing
- Wash or sanitize your hands frequently—particularly before and after using common areas
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
- Encourage employees to get a flu shot
Have disinfecting materials available
Your workplace should always be fully stocked with materials used for hygiene, cleaning, and disinfecting. This can include soap, hand sanitizer, cleaning spray, disposable wipes, tissues, no-touch trash cans, etc. Encourage use of these materials, including for frequent cleaning of your employees’ workstations.
Consider less in-person contact
Having more remote employees has worked well for a lot of businesses in the last few months. If you’re one of them, it could be a good idea to encourage more working from home. Particularly at times when the risk of spreading the flu or other flu-like illnesses is higher. Telephonic and video conference meetings are still great ways to hold important meetings while not in the same room. For anyone that needs to be in the office, there should be less contact between people. Discourage handshakes and encourage social distancing.
Encourage employees to stay home if sick
Employees who are experiencing flu-like symptoms—sore throat, cough, and particularly a fever of 100 degrees Fahrenheit or higher should not come to work. Employees are also less likely to bring illness into the office if you have systems in place that make it easier for them to call in sick during flu season or work from home, if possible.
If an employee is not sick but has a family member who is, they should monitor for symptoms and take extra precautions when in the workplace. For instances like this, it might also be a good idea to create leave policies that allow employees to stay home to care for sick family members or children, especially in the event of school closings.
Our team at ServiceMaster is ready 24/7/365 to answer your call. We’re dedicated to keeping you, your employees, customers, and visitors safe from bacteria and other pathogens in your facility. As experts in creating clean, safe, and healthy environments, we’re here to help reduce the risk of illness from your everyday germs to emerging pathogens. Let us help you.