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Implement Process Change

By understanding the levels of risk of exposure in your areas and developing corresponding protocols, you can further minimize the risk of exposure for your teams. 

As a leader, the first two steps you need to take to minimize risk to your employees are:

  1. Encouraging remote work as much as possible, and bringing back only those employees who need to be on campus.
  2. Implementing physical distancing in the department through signage and other recommendations.

Assessing your processes

Once you’ve completed step one and two, review your department’s processes to assess if they can be made safer. Think about how you can:

  • Limit personal interactions
  • Move activities online
  • Limit the locations where employees work to avoid movement around the facilities.

Step 1: Identify activities or processes in your department that could expose your employees to COVID.

Employees may be exposed to COVID-19 through:

  • Personal interactions, meaning contact with people who have symptoms through droplet transmission.
  • Contact with contaminated surfaces.

Determine the risk level of COVID-19 transmission (low, medium, high) by considering the likelihood of transmission and frequency of transmission through these activities.

Step 2: Modify the activity to decrease the risk

Once you have identified activities that could result in exposure, assess if the risk can be eliminated:

  • Could the activity that requires personal interaction be eliminated all together? 
  • Could the activity change to be safer (e.g. perform online or by phone)?
  • Can you take other steps to make it safer, such as:
    • sanitation of equipment between uses 
    • rotating shifts to limit personal interactions
    • floor markers to encourage physical distancing
    • limit the number of people in the area by adding signage
    • physical distancing

Step 3: Complete a sample departmental protocol outline

Scenarios

Exposure

Risk level

Modify activity

Working in shared spaces (cubicles, labs, studios or workshops) that share equipment.

Personal interaction or surface interaction

Medium

  • Employees should perform self-assessment screening before coming to space.
  • Establish physical distancing through signage.
  • Staggered shifts
  • Use of hand sanitizer.
  • Employees to sanitize shared spaces (countertops, benches, etc.) and equipment before and after each use.

Working in public facing areas (such as circulation desks, kiosks, reception areas that deal with monetary interactions, debit/credit payment terminals, or where physical space restrictions exist, etc) 

Frequent personal interaction or surface interaction

Medium to high

  • Employees should perform self-assessment screening before coming to space.
  • Establish physical distancing through signage.
  • Staggered shifts
  • Use of hand sanitizer.
  • Employees to sanitize shared spaces (countertops, benches, etc.) and equipment before and after each use.
  • Add plexiglass partition in reception style area where physical distancing can not be achieved.
  • Schedule appointments (pre-book online).

Implementing return-to-campus plans in your own area

Once you’ve reviewed the steps and examples outlined above, use the google docdepartment risk management template, external link to assess the risk in your own area and implement strategies to minimize it.

Please note you will need to be logged into my.ryerson.ca to access this document.

Reviewing the information on this site, such as the sections on How Ryerson Cleans Spaces and Employee Cleaning Guidelines will help information your department protocol.

Questions? 

If you require additional assistance or have questions in developing your return to campus plan, please reach out to your HR partner or Environmental Health and Safety at ehs@ryerson.ca.