Safeguarding Social Distancing: Retail Employees and their Customers Need Protection
That Tesco in the UK currently have up to 55,000 people unavailable for work, either through illness or self-isolation, and have needed to employ 45,000 extra staff in just two weeks to provide cover, illustrates the enormous problem faced by those retailers operating on the front line.
With eating out currently not an option, it is no surprise that rationing of some products has had to be introduced to cater for the resulting extra at-home consumption. This, and irrational panic buying has led to a 30% rise in purchases in the UK and created strain on the supply chain. It has also caused significant pressure on those employed across the store.
But it is that staff-customer interaction at the point of sale where the current situation has created the need to re-evaluate the personal wellbeing and security of the checkout assistants and their customers.
Providing a safe working and purchasing environment will provide peace of mind for all, should enable social distancing, and demonstrate to both customer and employees that the store takes their wellbeing very seriously. That is just as well, since it is where the loyalty of the future may well reside. With increasing options, customers’ treatment by retailers in these extraordinary times is unlikely to be forgotten and will influence their destinations of choice of where they spend their money, when normal life resumes.
Ergonomic Solutions, creators of the SpacePole® range of technology mounting solutions are offering the SafeGuard® Screen – a low cost and simple to install acrylic screen which creates a timely safety barrier for everyone at the point of sale. The screen can easily retrofit to existing SpacePole installations or complement existing hardware without taking up any transactional space either in the packing or payment areas. SpacePole SafeGuard® Screens are perfect for all types of food and non-food retail as well as hospitality and healthcare environments.
It is an unobtrusive solution which does not affect the current operator/customer interface. For example, the customer display can be on the customer side of the screen along with the payment terminal and loyalty scanner. As with all SpacePole products, the screen can be customised, as part of an existing or new installation.
Cleanliness is paramount and the acrylic surface can be easily cleaned and disinfected with wipes or bleach without causing any damage or degradation to the surface.