Controlling COVID-19 – An Employers Guide

Factory woman worker or technician with hygienic mask stand with confident action with her co-worker as background

Breaking Out Of The Great Indoors!

As a recruitment agency Bosun deals with employers and employees on a daily basis.

Our goal is to provide hard-working staff to businesses in their times of need, and because of this, we understand the importance of creating a safe and secure working environment.

In this guide, we’ll be breaking down the current guidelines from the government and the HSE to create a simple document that provides practical advice for dealing with COVID-19 in the workplace.

Symptomatic? Stay At Home

The first step to ensuring a safe workplace starts with you! If you are feeling unwell or showing any signs or symptoms of COVID-19 stay at home and consult a medical professional on 111 or 999 if it is an emergency.

A full list of Coronavirus symptoms are available on the NHS website, however, you will find a short list below.

Coronavirus Symptoms Short list:

  • High temperature
  • A new and continuous cough
  • A loss or change to your sense of smell or taste

Keep Your Distance!

Now that we are all heading back to work it is important that we remain vigilant and keep our distance.

The current guidelines mandate that workers, visitors and the general public should remain at least 2 metres apart, obviously, this is not always possible and in these circumstances, a 1-metre distance should be applied in conjunction with other safety measures.

These safety measures include:

  • Washing hands and shared working surfaces at an increased rate
  • Use screens or barriers to keep people separate where possible
  • Use back to back or side to side working positions
  • Use fixed teams or working partners to avoid person to person to contact

It is worth noting that these measures should be applied business-wide and not just in working areas, this includes break rooms and canteens, reception areas, entrances and exits and other similar areas in the workplace. 

Arriving To & Leaving Work

We are all very used to arriving for work at a set time each day, grabbing a tea or coffee and chatting about the previous evening with our coworkers and colleagues, but to create a safe working environment we need to modify this habit. 

Workplaces should introduce the following measures to ensure social distancing is upheld:

  • Staggered arrival and departure times
  • Provide additional parking spaces or facilities such as bike racks where possible
  • Limited passenger trips on corporate minibuses and similar vehicles
  • Create additional entry points to the workplace where possible
  • Provide more storage for workers personal items such as clothes, bags and jewellery
  • Create a one-way system through the workplace with clear markings
  • Provide handwashing or sanitising facilities at entrances and exits
  • Clean security devices such as entry keypads after each use

Restrict Access To Non-Essential Areas

To combat the spread of COVID-19 it may be necessary to restrict access to certain areas of the workplace completely or in certain circumstances limit the flow of foot traffic through the area. 

The following steps will help to introduce these measures:

  • Discourage non-essential trips through the workplace
  • Use radios and telephones where possible to reduce person to person contact. Radios such as the Baofeng GT-3TP handheld are cheaply available and offer an ideal solution to this problem.
  • Provide lift access where possible for disabled users and reduce the maximum occupancy limit.
  • Manage the use of high traffic areas such as corridors, lifts and security doors to maintain social distancing measures.

Workspaces & Workstations

This information is best suited to office and factory settings were employees would usually work closely with one another.

If this information does not fit your business model, the government offers a list of COVID advice segmented by industry which you may find helpful.

To mitigate any risks surrounding workspaces and workstations, follow these helpful hints:

  • Review workspace layouts to allow employees to work further apart
  • Clearly mark areas using paint or floor tape to help people comply with social distancing measures.
  • Where it is not possible to create more space, encourage back to back or side to side working.
  • Manage workspace occupancy by staggering shifts or operating with a reduced staffing model.
  • Avoid using shared work stations such as hot desks.
  • Clean and sanitise workspaces after each use


To avoid person to person transmission of the virus during meetings, why not try the following recommendations to help keep your team safe?

  • Use remote working tools such as Zoom or Google Meet
  • Avoid sharing pens, documents and other stationery
  • Provide hand sanitiser and face masks
  • Hold meetings outdoors if possible

Common Areas

Areas such as canteens, waiting rooms and reception areas will all fall under the category of common areas. The government provides the following recommendations for maintaining social distancing while using common areas.

  • Staggered break times
  • Create a safe outdoor recreational area
  • Provide packaged meals to staff to avoid opening canteens
  • Encourage workers to bring their own food
  • Reconfigure tables to reduce face to face interactions
  • Provide additional storage for staff members
  • Encourage employees to use storage such as lockers to store personal belongings

Work Together!

We hope that this guide provides you with all of the information needed to make your workplace COVID safe, however, if you still have questions you can refer to the full government guidance here for more information.

It’s important during these trying times that we all work together to stop the spread of COVID-19 allowing us to return to work normally.

If you are back at work and looking for full-time or part-time employees to help your business why not contact Bosun Recruitment today and a member of our friendly team will set you up with one of our experienced, pre-interviewed candidates.

Get in touch at