Companies are bringing employees back to the office, factory and/or facility through varying strategies₁:
- Ford, with more than 30,000 U.S. employees working remotely, will transition to a “flexible hybrid work model” and will start this new approach in July.
- IBM hasn’t set a specific timetable for asking workers to return to the office and expects about 80% of its 346,000 employees to return to a combination of remote and office schedules, determined by their roles.
- Walmart’s approximately 15.1 million employees mostly work at its stores and many worked in-store throughout the pandemic. It plans to bring workers back to its Bentonville, Ark. campus no earlier than July.
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As companies move forward with plans to bring employees back to work, HR teams and business owners will be responsible for ensuring that the workplace remains safe and employees are not subjected to an increased risk of contracting COVID-19. Arbill Industries, Inc. remains steadfast in its mission to educate employers and ensure that everyone returns home safely, every day.
“The safety needs of every company environment are different, even two offices that are of a similar size and configuration may have differing needs,” said Julie Copeland, CEO of Arbill, a U.S. and women-owned industrial safety company that has been providing personal protective equipment (PPE) to business and government agencies for more than 75 years. “In addition to understanding what specific PPE employees need, HR teams and employers must make certain they procure these products from companies with a reputation for high-quality and reliability.”
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Masks are the first line of defense and despite their appearance, not all masks are alike. Arbill created its “Together” mask to meet the European Afnor standard, among the most stringent performance standards in the world.
The “Together” mask achieves 95% fabric filtration protection and is more breathable and comfortable than disposable medical masks. It remains 95% effective up to an average of 10-20 washes and remains 90% effective after 50 washes. With effectiveness lasting up to 50 washes, the masks’ cost per use averages eight cents, around 1/6 the cost of the cheapest disposable mask available at leading retail stores. The masks have also been treated with SILVADUR antimicrobial technology which inhibits the growth of microorganisms in the fabric. Masks are available to employees in a 6-pack or 12-pack, which will give employees enough product for every day of the week, including swapping in fresh products after lunch breaks.
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In addition, because the Together mask is cotton, it biodegrades in approximately five months, versus 450 years for synthetic masks.
Arbill continues to look to medical and scientific professionals for guidance as products are continually tested and new consumer PPE products are developed.
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