As lockdown restrictions start to ease, it is essential that businesses take the necessary steps to ensure that employees can return to work safely and without risks to their health and wellbeing. To assist, the Welsh Government has published a range of guidance to help employers, employees and the self-employed understand how to work safely during the coronavirus pandemic.
To help you pinpoint any foreseeable hazards within your workplace and produce a plan to eliminate and control said hazards, we’ve put together a Returning to Work Health and Safety Guide.
To find out more, please see the further guidance from Thomas Carroll website.
Work from home
Employees should work from home, if possible.
COVID-19 Risk Assessment
Carry our a COVID-19 risk assessment and publish the results on your website.
Click here to download your COVID-19 Risk Assessment Template.
Practice Social Distancing
You should maintain 2 metres social distancing wherever possible.
Manage the Risk
Where people cannot maintain 2 metres social distancing, manage the risk of transmission.
Click here to download our return to work guidance document.
Practice good hand hygiene by washing your hands with soap and water and clean the workplace more frequently.
Plan – Do – Check – Act:
Each individual business will need to consider how they will return to work safely and develop a structured Return to Work Strategy which should focus on four key areas: Plan – Do – Check – Act.
- Identify what you need to do such as complete a risk assessment.
- Identify the responsibilities of the management team and who can return to work.
- Outline measure to safeguard against the transmission of COVID-19, such as:
- washing facilities,
- hygiene stations,
- 2-metre distancing measures.
- Directional flow signs
- rearranging layouts and seating
- redesign and staggering shift patterns
- Personal Protection Equipment (PPE)
- Entrance and Exits
- Welfare provisions
- Deep cleaning protocols
- Travel arrangements to work
- Ensuring statutory testing and inspections are up-to-date and,
- First aid and Emergency arrangements etc.
- Communicate the plan to all employees and explain what’s expected from them.
- Take action to implement your plan.
- Check that the plan is working and managing the risk of COVID-19 effectively.
- Encourage feedback and involvement from employees and/or their representatives
- Identify and investigate any issues that have arisen, including any new cases reported.
- Learn from experience and continuously improve and update your COVID-19 risk assessment and Business Continuity Plans.
- Keep a record of all the reviews undertaken.
Whilst the Plan-Do-Check-Act model will help organise your return to work, the information provided above is far from exhaustive If any further help is required please visit the Thomas Carroll website or give them a call on 02920 853794.
Thomas Carroll has also designed a Return to Work Health and Safety Guidance Manual (PDF) which can be downloaded here.
Included in the manual:
- Current Government COVID-19 Workplace Guidance
- Employee Considerations Before Returning to the Workplace
- COVID-19 Employee Return to Work Checklist
- COVID-19 Workplace Return to Work Checklist
- COVID-19 Return to Work Risk Assessment Guidance and Template.
This guide is aimed at all employers and those who are self-employed and work with, or near other people. It explains how you can protect people from Coronavirus (COVID-19) in your workplace.
All employers have a duty of care to protect anyone affected by their activities and as such, must identify foreseeable hazards and establish a plan to eliminate and control the hazards.