Sitemark, the independent benchmarking service for the facilities management industry, has launched a workplace hygiene programme in response to the coronavirus outbreak. The programme has been developed to enable businesses to maintain clean and hygienic buildings so that building users remain safe and healthy.
Unlike traditional cleaning specifications which focus almost entirely on visual standards of cleanliness, this programme will help to identify and control those areas where additional hygiene standards are required. This will minimise the risk of workplace contamination for those key sites which are still occupied and will support those managing empty buildings as they gradually become reoccupied.
The essence of the programme is to identify all areas of a building where the risk of contamination to building users is high, highlight them and then clean them at a frequency that is appropriate to the area they are in. This includes common areas, door handles, lifts, and stairway railings.
The highly visual system positively drives the behaviours of building users, cleaning operatives and facilities managers, and is based on the use of 'High Intensity Touch Point' indicators. These will remind building users to wash their hands after passing through a high-risk area, and prompt cleaning staff to pay additional attention to deep cleans of these areas.
The programme is suitable for all types of sites, can be used in conjunction with an existing cleaning specification and can be adapted over time as building usage changes. Implementing the system is a simple three stage process: Step 1: Categorise every area type within your building; Step 2: Determine the 'touch point' cleaning frequency for every area type; and Step 3: Apply the 'touch point' indicators at appropriate locations.
Mike Boxall, managing director at Sitemark, said: “While there is understandably a lot of focus on keeping buildings safe now, we need to think about how to keep them safe when offices, shops and schools reopen. A lot of people might want assurances that their workplace is fit for purpose. Through the use of the workplace hygiene programme, building managers can point to the programme as evidence of the steps they are taking, and the indicators will act as daily visual reminders to everyone of how to stay safe and hygienic. Companies will need a thorough cleaning programme that is well communicated to staff in order to get back to business as smoothly as possible.”
The programme can be self-managed or independently audited by Sitemark to demonstrate that 'best practice' is being met. The programme includes the provision of:
- Complete workplace risk assessment tool (available to download free of charge).
- Programme control document.
- Hygiene cleaning specification.
- Pictogram based method statements (Routine/Swab Testing/Deep clean).
- Wall mounted guide.
- High intensity 'touch point' indicators.
- Audit protocol and scoresheet (optional).
- Independent 'best practice' certification.