Winter is on its way, and in many areas that means snow, ice, and frigid temperatures. Whether you’re a small or large business, inclement winter weather can affect your office and your employees. Therefore, it’s important to be prepared by winterizing your workplace and your policies. Here are some tips for preparing your office for winter.
Conduct a Roof Inspection
As snow falls and gathers on the roof, the extra weight and moisture can reveal leaks and areas of weakness. If leaves or other debris have not been removed, snow and meltwater can funnel this material into the gutters, potentially leading to clogs that can diminish the ability for water to drain. This may lead to pools of liquid trapped on the roof, increasing the likelihood of leaks. Suffice to say that leaks and excess weight on the roof are nuisances and possible hazards. A quick inspection can find and address any problematic areas, preventing stress and hassle.
Optimize your HVAC system
With colder temperatures, heating needs will rise. This is the time to check your HVAC system and complete any necessary maintenance, such as replacing filters. The last thing you want is the heat to fail during the winter.
Furthermore, consider automating or manually lowering the heat during off hours and over the weekend to aid in energy costs. However, be sure not to reduce the heat too much, as pipes in walls and areas only peripherally heated are at risk of bursting at low temperatures. To be safe, keep the thermostat above 50F.
Store Salt for Sidewalks and Prepare for Snow/Ice Removal
Snow and ice are a reality of winter, and keeping your entryways free of these obstructions is imperative to avoid a potential slip and fall. Make sure that you have a salting compound stored, and a protocol for its dispersal before and after inclement weather. Establish a policy for snow removal, as well, whether by custodial employment or in the hiring of an outside service provider. These policies will ensure that those entering and passing by your office can do so safely.
Utilize Floor Mats
Throughout the winter, streets and sidewalks may be coated in snowmelt and salting compounds. Unfortunately, much of this liquid and coarse grain can be tracked into the office. This is where floor mats become vital. Placed in entryways, mats trap much of the salt and water, preventing this damaging material from coating the floors and creating a hazardous situation.
Stock up on Hand Sanitizer and Tissues
Cold and flu season ramps up during the winter. It’s impossible to prevent everyone from catching a bug, but it’s important to provide hand sanitizer and tissues to help mitigate the spread of these germs.
Establish Inclement Weather Policies
If a heavy snowstorm passes through, employees will want a consistent source to find relevant delays or closures to your office. Having a policy that dictates where to find this information in place before inclement weather ensures that the business can run smoothly even under extenuating circumstances.
If telecommuting is an option during poor weather, be sure to disseminate this information to employees beforehand so that they do not feel the need to unnecessarily endanger themselves to get to the office.
Consistently Back Up Data
With serious storms, power outages can occur. If your office utilizes important data, have a consistent back-up protocol in place. Furthermore, for any important and sophisticated devices, provide surge protectors to prevent damage during an outage and the subsequent return of power.
When frigid and snowy weather arrives, you want to be prepared. Following these tips should safeguard your office against potential issues. For the cold-weather supplies you will need this winter season, come to EON. Contact us today to learn about our offerings.