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Construction is one of the most vital industries in the UK. Even though construction work takes place outdoors for the most part, it’s still important that if you own or operate a construction company, you have a plan for keeping your employees safe and healthy as they return to work during the coronavirus pandemic.
The government has recently issued guidelines for people who work in outdoor environments and there are a few important steps they recommend. In some instances, having a reliable vehicle tracking system can help you meet these recommendations and alleviate some of the challenges.
Adjusting your working practices
As of now, the government advises that those employees who can work from home, should continue to do so. However, in the construction industry, that obviously doesn’t apply to a good number of workers. When bringing employees back to work, you should aim to have the minimum number of people on site and ask yourself the following:
- Which employees are vulnerable and at a higher risk of severe illness?
- Which workers are essential to the day’s work?
- How many supervisors do they need?
- Are there enough people on site to ensure operations can proceed safely?
Streamlining your onsite work force can go a long way towards keeping your employees safe.
Ensuring your onsite workers are protected
All employees should adhere to the government guidelines around personal protective equipment and social distancing, especially those with pre-existing conditions who are still able to work onsite. You can help your employees by:
- Supplying face masks and gloves in addition to standard safety equipment
- Enforcing social distance guidelines and mandating that employees always stay a minimum of 2m away from each other
- Providing unlimited access to handwashing facilities and encouraging employees to routinely wash their hands with soap and water for 20 seconds
- Routinely cleaning objects and surfaces that are used by many people such as tools and control panels
Keeping all your staff connected
With employees at home, on site, or operating on a limited basis, making sure everyone is connected and working is a challenge. Having a vehicle tracking system like Quartix can help by:
- Monitoring vehicles and vehicle equipment: With Quartix you can see where your vehicles are in real-time, 24/7. You can also oversee the use of ancillary equipment like lifts, door openings and warning lights
- Accurately reporting start and finish times: When you need to make the most of a limited number of staff, Quartix reports can help by showing exactly when workers arrived and left the construction site
- Alerting you to out of hours work: Whether it’s by establishing geofences or reading a daily report that outlines activity out of hours, vehicle tracking can help you make sure your vehicles are being used responsibly
- Helping you keep up with routine maintenance: Quartix integrates with Fleetcheck to provide a full fleet management solution and has a built-in feature to ensure you never miss milestones like MOT inspections or insurance renewals
“It’s great for us, because we’ve done away with timesheets. Our employees don’t need to do the paperwork – we use the daily email reports to log their hours on site and calculate wages from that. The system definitely saves us money.” Pauline Brett, Office Manager, Ellenby Construction.
If your employees are taking company vehicles home overnight, Quartix can help you manage those remotely. With the free Quartix mobile app, you can even monitor your fleet when you are away from your computer.
Following these simple guidelines and establishing new working practices can help create a safe working environment for your staff and help prevent a return to a stricter lockdown.