Are businesses in the Philippines ready to reopen as COVID-19 still looms?

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As of August 10th, the DOH recorded 59,970 active cases, bringing its total to 129,913. Before the surge of COVID-19 cases, businesses across the country had started reopening. In fact, salons and barbershops in areas under general community quarantine (GCQ) had also increased their customer capacity from 30% to 50%.

Despite the high rate of new coronavirus cases and increased concerns about whether businesses are ready to reopen, President Duterte’s economic advisers insisted that resuming operations would be the best way forward. However, not without stringent safety measures like social distancing, wearing protective gear, and temperature checks on customers.

To meet government guidelines, businesses such as malls are innovating for safe shopping and services. So, are you ready to re-open and embrace business in the ‘new normal.’ Here are some measures for reopening workplaces amid the pandemic.

Adhere to Government Guidelines

Depending on your daily operations and location, you may be allowed to reopen fully or partially. So, before you can resume your business, find out which industries can open under quarantine and ensure you comply with government guidelines. For example, if you operate a restaurant in areas under general community quarantine (GCQ), you can offer dine-in services but with a limited capacity of 30%. For restaurants in areas under enhanced and modified enhanced community quarantine( ECQ and MECQ), you can only offer takeout and delivery services at 50% capacity.

Disinfect Business Premises

Under sanitation and disinfection guidelines, businesses must have clean water, soap, sanitizers, and disinfectants available at the entrance, in all corridors, and conference rooms. Both employers and workers must commit to disinfecting high-touch places like doorknobs, handles, and table surfaces every two hours. It is also mandatory to clean and disinfect business regularly to eliminate traces of the virus.

For this reason, business owners have resorted to hiring certified COVID-19 cleaners. Professional cleaning services follow current industry practices and use high-level equipment to ensure offices, malls, and restaurants are free from viruses.

Boost Safety at the Workplace

As a business owner, you must provide and ensure employees wear face masks and personal protective gear all the time. You should also instruct employees to inform customers about health protocols in the business premise. This includes requesting them to have their temperature checked, wear face masks, wash their hands or use hand sanitizer before accessing the facility.

The government has also imposed strict social distancing rules to prevent the spread of COVID-19. These measures include discouraging lengthy face-to-face conversations between workers and clients and maintaining one-meter radius space. It is also advisable to use videoconferencing to avoid crowding in conference rooms.

Running businesses post-pandemic era won’t be the same as it was before. There are many adjustments to consider, like going fully digital to allow online orders, cashless payment, and product delivery. Building an e-commerce store is like starting a business from scratch, but also a sure way of encouraging your customers to stay home and prevent the spread of the virus. While the future looks uncertain, now’s the time to prepare and resume operations by following the government’s minimum health and safety protocols.


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