Creating and maintaining a hygienic workplace is vitally important for any business, what’s more, when you employ larger numbers of staff or increase your workforce germs will multiply and create even more hazards! Workers will be far happier in a hygienic workplace, as there are fewer risks needing to be faced. Even more importantly, the UK Health and Safety Executive (HSE) stipulates that a clean working environment with supplies of suitable waste containers is a legal requirement.
No matter whether you manage a retail space, bar or office, or your industry is in the hospitality, manufacturing or distribution sector, the same guidelines for creating a hygienic workplace apply to a number of basic elements of everyday work life. Some of these are highlighted below.
Creating a hygienic workplace
Some general standards for creating a healthy and hygienic workplace are ensuring you supply essentials for all toilets and washrooms. These include:
– The provision of hot and cold water to all washing areas
– Soap and flour sack towels for hand washing and toilet paper for all toilets
– All toilets and washrooms should be regularly cleaned and maintained
– Where cold water supplies are unsuitable for drinking purposes, adequate signage should be in place to notify employees
Kitchens and canteens are other areas where bugs and bacteria can quickly multiply, so it’s important workers have easy access to cleaning products at all times. Any spills or crumbs are easy to wipe up and surfaces can be maintained in a clean, hygienic manner this way. Kitchens and food and drink preparation areas can be a real risk to health when the highest standards are not maintained at all times. Whether you serve members of the public or just your in-house team, it’s important to keep areas where drinks and food are prepared regularly in a scrupulously clean state, and any appliances should be cleaned regularly. Considerations include:
– Maintaining the cleanliness of all work surfaces used for the preparation of food; particular attention should be given to utensils and chopping boards (which are colour coded for the use of different foodstuffs).
– All appliances should be cleaned on a regular basis
– Cupboards used for the storage of food and eating utensils or crockery should be regularly cleaned inside and out
– All floors, windows and doors should be cleaned regularly
Remember that employees and customers alike are entitled to complain if they believe lack of maintenance and poor cleaning of the kitchen area has created a health risk. Once again, it’s best to encourage employees to take some responsibility to protect them and to practise good hygiene.
So, you’ve provided all the above, but it doesn’t stop there. Notices to remind all workers about the importance of personal hygiene are one way to help prevent the spread of germs and illnesses. Dotting hand sanitisers around your workplace is another useful reminder of hygiene for workers in any area of your business, and encouraging staff to use sanitisers on a regular basis also helps prevent the build-up of bacteria and germs.
Providing industrial strength hand cleaners is important within industrial workplaces, like engineering units or vehicle service stations, and this makes it quick and easy for employees to maintain clean hands after every dirty job.
In the office, your workers should ensure all clutter is binned on a regular basis and keep their workstations tidy. Cleaning wipes and sprays located at strategic points in the office can help workers maintain the healthy, hygienic status of their work areas.
Finally, although many aspects of maintaining a hygienic workplace are down to employees, they are entitled to complain if your shoddy cleaning and lack of maintenance creates health risks. Take responsibility for managing the health and hygiene of your workplace from today by ensuring adequate supplies of all the essentials needed to maintain a clean environment.