Your custodial team is going to be the first line of defense in your battle against Covid-19 or ‘coronavirus.’ Keep in mind that it’s only one prong in the many-pronged approach you’ll take to keep your facility and your employees safe. But it’s certainly an essential player.
A few months ago we talked about cleaning for flu season, and many of the tips you’ll find here will be no different, but perhaps with some added urgency and a few variations that add thoroughness.
Back to Basics
This list, of course, must begin with a return to the best practices for everyone in your facility — cleaning staff and other members both included:
– Wash hands frequently and properly. At this point, there are plenty of great resources that serve as a reminder on how to properly wash your hands. Check those out and go to the CDC for information on sanitizing your hands in lieu of hand washing. Sanitizer solutions should contain an alcohol ratio of at least 60%.
– Keep hands away from your face. This is a tough one for a lot of folks, and can be impractical for children. Even so, most people can make an effort to reduce or eliminate the amount of face touching they do in their workplace.
– Consider ‘social distancing.’ This is a rather harsh and alienating term for what is actually just a simple shift in etiquette. Consider congregating in large groups carefully and only do so when really necessary. When greeting coworkers, consider other forms of salutation than the usual handshake.
– Clean and disinfect surfaces! This is a good one to put here, at the beginning, because your custodial staff can provide every-day cleaning products to the rest of your employees that allows them to continue the good work the janitorial team has begun. Wipes, disinfectants, and other products should be placed in strategic, high-touch areas throughout your facility.
Clean For Health
If you’ve got a great custodial team, your facility’s health will already be their top priority. But it’s worth going over best practices for cleaning AND disinfecting with your janitorial staff. Make sure they’re aware of the new products you’ll be introducing during flu season and ramping up during the Covid-19 cleaning season. Make sure they’re well-versed and even consider holding a special workshop to test knowledge and ensure confidence is 100%.
Target Those High-Traffic Zones
The list goes on here — elevator buttons, railings, desks, door handles, phones and light switches — but everything should be given a thorough, considered cleaning. Make sure that not only does the custodial staff target these areas with higher concentration, but they also visit them more frequently. Both concentration and consistency will be important in eliminating the risk in these ‘hot spot’ areas of your facility.
Finally, don’t forget that the biggest wall of defense will be educating both your custodial staff and employee base. The cleaning team will set you up for success, and the rest of your staff will bring it home!