The Importance of Washing Your Hands at Work
A clean and healthy office goes beyond regular commercial cleaning services, washing your hands is always an important activity to incorporate into your office routine. Not only does regular hand washing benefit you and remove potentially harmful dirt and bacteria from your hands. It also helps benefit everyone who spends time around you, since it stops the spread of germs--especially if you spend a lot of time around a group of people in a setting like your office.
If you want to know why you should focus on washing your hands at work, and why everyone at your organization should focus on a regular hand washing routine, here are some of the most important ways it can benefit people.
Stop the Spread of Disease
Getting sick is a regular part of life. If you work with a group of people, there's a good chance that people will get sick from time to time. To stop people who are sick at work from spreading their germs to other people, or to wash off germs from someone sick that may have accidentally been passed to you, encourage handwashing. Studies show that handwashing is effective at stopping the spread of germs, and that it can reduce the risk of respiratory infections by 16%.
Boost Attendance, Productivity, and Success
It can harm a business with employees are out sick, or they're at work but don't feel well enough to do their best. By encouraging regular handwashing at work, companies can reduce absenteeism and ensure that no work time is wasted. Even using alcohol based hand sanitizer as a means of washing hands can help keep people well and showing up. In fact, in a school setting, the use of hand sanitizer to keep hands clean reduced absences due to illness by 19.8%.
How to Encourage Handwashing at Work
Obviously, washing hands in the workplace is an important step for health and hygiene. But, how do you make sure everyone at work is washing their hands, too? Here are some ways that you can encourage a culture of hand washing at the office.
- Be Prepared: Always keep soap dispensers full and paper towels stocked. By ensuring sinks are properly equipped for hand washing, you'll encourage people to do it. If you don't have a maintenance team, create a rotating schedule so that each person checks soap dispensers twice daily for a week.
- Offer Hand Sanitizer: Put hand sanitizer dispensers throughout your office to encourage regular cleaning of hands. While washing hands with soap and water can completely remove germs from hands, hand sanitizer can help kill harmful bacteria and stop the spread of disease.
- Use Signage: Create signs and post them around the bathrooms and kitchens reminding people to wash their hands. Sometimes a little reminder is all it takes to get someone to stop and get clean.
At the end of the day, the workplace is a spot where people spend a lot of time in close proximity to one another. Because people are so close so frequently, it ups the chances that they can spread germs to one another. The spread of germs is also common because people touch and use the same facilities and items. By encouraging regular handwashing at work, you can reduce the spread of germs, increase regular attendance, and ensure that more people stay healthy and happy in the office year round.