Safe Management Measures required at the workplace after the circuit breaker period
Safe Management Measures required at the workplace after the circuit breaker period
Measures need to be in place before selective economic activities can resume
min read Published on 09 May 2020

Selected economic activities may be allowed to resume as local transmission numbers come down.

But workplaces should begin to put in place a system of Safe Management measures, to prevent the re-emergence of community cases.

This includes implementing a detailed monitoring plan to ensure compliance with the measures, and appointing a Safe Management Officer (SMO) to assist in the implementation, coordination and monitoring of the Safe Management measures.

'' As we work towards progressively opening up our economy, we will ensure that the health and safety of our people remains our top priority, but we recognise that their livelihoods are equally important. ''
- Minister Chan Chun Sing, in a Facebook post (3 May)

Telecommute from home, if possible

Employees should be provided the necessary IT equipment and solutions to enable remote working. Internal and external meetings should be conducted virtually where possible.

All events and activities that involve close and prolonged contact among participants, and social gatherings at the workplace should be cancelled or deferred.

Special attention should be paid to vulnerable staff (eg. Older, pregnant, or those with underlying medical conditions), to enable them to work from home.

If telecommuting is not possible, the following precautions must be in place:

  • Stagger work and break hours to reduce possible congregation of employees at common spaces.

    Implement staggered working hours over at least three 1-hourly blocks, with not more than half of the employees reporting to work within each 1-hour block.

    Where possible, reporting and ending times should not coincide with peak-hour travel.

  • Implement shift or split team arrangements

    There must be no cross-deployment or interaction between employees in different shifts, teams or worksites, even outside of work.

  • Minimise need for physical touchpoints where possible.

  • Ensure clear physical spacing of at least 1 metre between persons at all time using visual indicators or physical demarcations.

If physical meetings are needed, limit the number of attendees and shorten the duration. Suppliers and contractors should implement similar safe distancing measures. Customer-facing operations should adopt queue management measures and use cashless or contactless payment modes.

'' We will begin reaching out to all companies on how to put in place the measures required to resume operations. We want to give them time to plan and do the necessary so that they will be able to implement the measures in an efficient and effective manner. ''
- Minister Chan Chun Sing, in a Facebook post (3 May)
  • Support contact tracing

    All employees should download and activate the TraceTogether app, to help MOH quickly identify potential close contacts of COVID-19 patients and reduce disease transmission.

    The SafeEntry visitor management system must be used to record the entry and exit of all staff and visitors entering the workplace. Unwell staff will be refused entry, and unwell visitors must be asked to reschedule their appointments.

  • Wear masks and observe good personal hygiene

    Everyone onsite must wear a mask and other necessary personal protective equipment. Employers must ensure sufficient masks (and including replacement masks where needed) for all.

    Remember to observe good personal hygiene. Wash your hands regularly and refrain from touching your face.

  • Step up cleaning at workplaces

    Common spaces, particularly those with high human contact, need to be cleaned regularly, in particular, between each meeting, or seating.

    Shared equipment and machinery must be cleaned and disinfected between changing hands across different teams/shifts.

  • Cleaning and disinfecting agents must be provided

    This includes hand soap and toilet paper at washrooms, and hand sanitisers at places like entrances and lift lobbies.

    Workplaces need to implement health checks

  • Regular temperature screening and declarations

    Before entering premises, you should declare travel history, whether or not you’ve received a quarantine or isolation order, stay-home notice or MC for respiratory symptoms, and that you’re not a close contact of a confirmed case.

  • Adhere to travel advisories; report and track unwell cases

    If unwell, report to your employer, leave the workplace and consult a doctor immediately. Employers must track and record these cases.

  • Don’t clinic hop

If you did, inform the clinic of all recent doctor visits over past 14 days for any COVID-19- related symptoms. Submit to your employer records of your MC and diagnoses (for COVID-19-related symptoms) and if you were tested for COVID-19. Closely monitor your health before returning to the workplace.

Protocols to manage potential cases

An evacuation plan must be prepared for confirmed cases, and everyone else at the workplace (both mobile and conscious, as well as incapacitated or unconscious individuals).

For confirmed cases

The section of the workplace where the case worked should be immediately vacated and cordoned-off. A thorough cleaning and disinfecting of all areas and assets exposed to the confirmed case must be carried out, in accordance to NEA guidelines.

Businesses could be suspended if there are public health grounds.

The above measures must be in place, and communicated and explained to employees prior to resuming work.

If the measures are not well-implemented, tighter measures that affect our economy and livelihoods would have to be introduced.

More info:
MOM Advisory - Requirements for Safe Management Measures at the workplace after Circuit Breaker period