As we start to prepare for the re-opening of stores it is likely that some virus control restrictions will continue to be necessary to limit transmission. The safety and wellbeing of every retailers’ staff and customers is a top priority.
The British Retail Consortium have published a helpful guide for retailers with recommended social distancing procedures. This is to prepare you for reopening whilst putting measures in place to avoid the spread of the coronavirus.
It’s important that you review your business operation, anticipated footfall and dwell time to make an assessment as to how much queuing space to create.
Some suggestions for retailers to aid in social distancing of customers:
- Limit the number of people permitted inside the store at any one time
- Queuing system outside premises taking other businesses and public space into consideration – floor vinyls, signage, barriers
- Single entrance and exit – if possible, greet customers at entrance or use signage to explain the system
- One-way system inside premises – floor vinyls
Working out how much space is needed to move around in your business:
- Measure your floor space – Multiply the length by the width. Get the square meterage.
- Measure your display areas – Take out the measurement of any display areas, this gives you the walkable area. .
- Allow enough space for people to move about – Each person requires 10 square metres of walkable space. So, divide the walkable area by 10.
Now you know how many people can safely be in your business or office space.
Here’s an example:
Overall floor space is:
11m (width) x 7m (length) = 77m2
2 display areas of 1.5m (length) x 1m (width) = 3m2
2 display areas of 3m (length) x 1m (width) = 6m2
Total display area – 9m2.
Take the display area from the overall floor area:
77 – 9 = 68. You have 68m2 walkable area.
68 ÷ 10 = 6.8
You can have a maximum of 7 people in the space.
For retail, leisure and hospitality businesses, this includes any members of staff you have front of house. Use the same formula to work out how many staff you can have at your till points / behind counters.
If you are still temporarily closed, the Retailer Group have compiled a useful checklist to ensure your premises are secure and not incurring unnecessary costs during lock-down. The list includes suggestions such as checking and cancelling any forward orders from suppliers, stopping monthly charges from card payment providers, making sure timers for lighting and heating are switched off or on revised settings.