Preparing for Level 2

Cyndi Christensen has some questions you should ask yourself before operating at Alert Level 2

Baylands Brewery Ryan browsing fridge

I want to focus on Level 2, as I assume New Zealand will be in Level 2 for a much longer period of time. Conversations I am having with small business owners,  is more around how are you going to operate at Level 2, knowing there will need to still be 2 metre physical distancing and contact tracing at each and every business. Then there is sanitization, assumedly an exponentially increased level of sanitization will be needed, equally to make costumers feel safe and follow Level 2 government protocols. I wonder if they have costed out the benefits of opening in Level 3 conditions against the uptake from their customers and will that give them time to do spatial plans of their business space and how to keep both customers and staff safe. I am sure many business owners have been doing just that, but has enough?

So I have come up with a few questions to ask yourself as a business owner:

  1. Have you considered a new floor plan of your business in Level 2 and understand how staff, customers, and goods move through this space?
  2. How are you redesigning the space to allow for 2 metre physical distancing of staff and of customers?
  3. Knowing that you may not be able to have the same number of people in your business at the same time-What is your plan for creating a functional back of house that still gives you the appropriate level of production needed? Same for the front of house?
  4. Knowing there will be limited numbers coming through the front door, and you still need to have a certain amount of customers per day, how are you planning to accomplish that?
  5. Contact tracing will be part of the new norm, getting prepared now, setting up a system that both staff and customers find functional and efficient is important. Are there programmes or systems you have in place that will/can be tweaked for this application? Have you researched any new options that are available?
  6. How will you maintain it? ie: sanitizing routine, training staff, managing the personal info

There is more information and support locally, check it out. Reach out and get connected with your local business support programmes, business groups, and your business neighbours. We are all in this together.

Cyndi Christensen is Hutt City Council's CBD development manager supporting  Lower Hutt businesses in to this new world.