As businesses continue to adjust to the coronavirus pandemic, there are many valuable lessons to be learned, Robert Levandoski, president of manufacturing solutions for Fuss & O’Neill, said May 7 during CBIA's 2021 Health & Safety Conference.

One of the most important lessons is to be ready for the next pandemic.

“We need to start to look back at the planning because, in many cases, our planning was not sufficient to cover this,” Levandoski said. “When we look at some of the things we didn’t plan for—like the level of PPE we would need—we surely were not prepared.”

Keeping up with OSHA standards, including that COVID is recordable, can be difficult but is imperative, he said.

“OSHA understands that there are still challenges trying to figure out what is going on with the standards related to the health of employees,” Levandoski said. “Compliance officers are available to help with this and they provide you the information you need.”

Improved Outcomes

The pandemic has already given us standardized best practices that could lead to improved health outcomes, Levandoski noted.

“Many companies instituted occupancy and distancing standards,” he said. “Others improved their building’s air flow through HVAC improvements.”

Levandoski also warned employers with remote workers to pay attention to ergonomics.

“This is one of the hidden exposures that we really haven’t taken into account,” he said. “There have been a lot of changes, and with people being home, we really don’t know what that workplace looks like.”

Levandoski advised employers to educate their people on proper ergonomics, provide equipment, accommodations, and early interventions, and stress regular movement.

For more information, contact CBIA’s Phillip Montgomery (860.244.1900).