With the economy reopening, bakers are now faced with the challenge of running a business in a precarious and possibly hazardous time. With a plethora of new restrictions and guidelines to follow, and consumers who are more on edge than ever, how can business owners even begin making up the deficit from weeks or months of closure, while keeping customers happy and safe?
Fortunately Stratton Sales is here to help you create a sterile and sanitary environment that will reduce customer anxiety and assist in compliance with laws and regulation.
1: Ensure dining areas or lobbies are sanitary, spread out, and closely monitored.
Of course the most obvious thing we should all be doing to prevent the spread of COVID-19 is practicing proper hygiene, sanitation, and social distancing.
Make sure the payment counter and any self serve areas have protective glass/plastic, determine whether floor markings are necessary to maintain an orderly customer flow, and ensure dining areas are at least 6 feet apart from another. Make sure that high touch areas such as counters, door handles, phones, etc, are coupled with hand sanitizer, and are sanitized diligently.
Some less obvious things that can be done to minimize the risk of contamination are removing unnecessary items from tables and shelves such as display pieces or condiments. Keeping them available on request will ensure they are cleaned thoroughly between every use.
Consider doing what you can to minimize touch points such as propping doors open in high traffic areas and additionally, offer options for pick up and curbside for those looking to skip the lobby altogether.
2: Ensure your staff is well informed and executes your reopening plan carefully and watchfully.
Welcome back your staff and inform them of the changes that will be taking place to ensure their safety and the public’s.
It is critical they understand the difference between CLEANING (tidying up, removing dirt, flour, etc) and SANITIZING (sterilizing and killing any bacteria or viruses)
Ideally workers will be grouped so that they do not overlap in working hours, and kept in consistent groups to limit possible spread of disease. Establish a wellness check in when arriving to quickly verify the health of workers, and make sure sick employees are sent home.
Keep 6 feet between employees when possible, and determine whether employees should be required to wear an acceptable quality face mask. Provide them with one if necessary, as well as gloves, proper cleaning supplies, sanitizer, and other applicable resources to keep your business as hygienic and sanitary as possible.
Sanitize touch-points and workstations frequently, and make sure shared stations are cleaned between every use. Establish a check in and check out sheet for each shared workstation to designate the machine is in use, or sanitized and ready for the next user.
3: Inform everyone about your new practices.
Informing everyone inside and outside of your business about your practices will help people feel more comfortable and pick up on them faster. Have sanitation guides posted and available for employees, and inform customers of your reopen date, new practices, changes they can expect, etc.
Make sure you have a consistent internal communication plan to make sure your employees ask questions if they are confused, and inform your customers with the same consistent information on safety practices.
Though it may seem like an insurmountable task to begin reopening, it is really a series of small conscious decisions. Be mindful and conscious of the situation we are in, and make sure to check in with any state laws to ensure complete compliance before reopening your bakery.
Stratton Sales is committed to promoting the safety of bakers and the public.
If you would like advice or help organizing your bakery or workflow please call: (801) 973-4041 to speak to a professional.