Businesses from across the West Midlands have had a sneak peek at how a multi-national retailer has stepped up its COVID-19 safety measures to keep staff safe. Amazon, which has a fulfilment centre in Rugeley, has been providing tours of the site in an initiative with the British Chambers of Commerce. Members of Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce were some of the businesses which got a behind-the-scenes look at the new measures.
Gary Norton, site leader at Amazon Rugeley, said: “We’re delighted to be able to show members of the Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce first-hand how we have implemented a range of measures to keep our people safe in Rugeley while continuing to serve our customers. We’re proud to be part of the immediate Rugeley and wider West Midlands communities and want to do all we can to help fellow Chamber members return to work safely and effectively whatever their line of work or occupation.”
Amazon has put in place several new measures to make the premises COVID-secure, including enhanced cleaning and social distancing measures, issuing of personal protective equipment and temperature checks of workers.
Businesses taking part in the tours also received advice on how to implement safety measures and reopen workplaces.
Chris Plant, director of Burton and District Chamber of Commerce, said: “We’re hearing from businesses of all shapes and sizes about the difficulties in adapting their workplaces to new ways of working during the Covid-19 crisis.
“Amazon, an international retailing giant, has stepped up during this virus crisis to keep its massive warehouses safe, clean and secure. All businesses, regardless of sector or size, can learn via these dedicated, Chamber of Commerce exclusive tours how they too can make their premises COVID secure for customers and staff alike. We’re grateful to Amazon for providing these tours to help other firms during these unprecedented times for business.”
Two businesses which took part in the tours were Burton and District Chamber of Commerce patrons Document Network Services and Bromley Hays.
Steve Lockwood, managed services consultant for Document Network Services Ltd, said: “The challenges for us are making sure our premises are safe to return to, ensuring it’s safe to visit client premises and becoming accustomed to online meetings.
“The visit showed the importance of adapting quickly to the ever-changing rules and ensuring there are good social distancing procedures in place.
“For me, key takeaways were the importance of being vigilant at all times and providing temperature checks for everyone.”
Jay Hensman, managing director of Bromley Hays, a turnkey refurbishment, fit-out and construction project company which employs seven people, said: “With each of our sites being bespoke, our key practical challenge is developing new site rules and procedures to minimise the risk of Covid-19 and maintaining social distance.
“Visiting Amazon highlighted how much best practice evolves and that implementing the most effective Covid-19 safety measures is a journey, not a one-off activity and all businesses need to be reactive to changing Government guidelines.”