Published 11th March 2020

In this update we cover Government advice and the steps that the Thorn Baker Brands (Industrial, Construction and Estates, Facilities &Maintenance) will be taking to tackle the risk of Covid-19 in the workplace with respect to temporary workers and candidates for permanent roles. This update is in line with the REC guidance to members provided on 5th March 2020.

Government Guidance

We advise all our clients to stay updated with the government guidance – this is a fast-moving area and the guidance is being updated daily at 2 pm.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): latest information and advice  on the gov.uk website includes:

  • Advice from the FCO (foreign and commonwealth office) which particularly relates to anyone travelling to or back from countries and areas affected by the virus. 
  • An updated list of countries/areas that are affected and advice about actions to be taken when returning to the UK from those places.
  • Guidance issued by Public Health England and the Department for Health.

Additional guidance is likely to be added to the gov.uk website so do review this regularly, putting ‘coronavirus’ into the search function.

The Workplace

We will be asking all our clients if you have put any specific policies in place to manage Coronavirus risks in the workplace.  If there are any specific policies in place then we will review our ability to comply with them and advise accordingly.

We will share that information with all agency workers on assignment and any other candidates and update accordingly when the information changes.

There is an obligation on hirers to inform the agency of any relevant Health & Safety matters.

Our Supply of Temporary Workers and Permanent Candidates

We will make our clients aware of any individual (Staff, Temporary Worker; Permanent Candidate) who have sought medical advice, have symptoms or may have been exposed, or have been directed to self-isolate – e.g. following advice from a GP or NHS 111.

Thorn Baker has an obligation to take certain steps if we are made aware that a temporary worker or permanent candidate either is, or could be unsuitable for the role they are working in. This could certainly include a situation where you are informed that they have been or could have been exposed to Coronavirus.

Additional Support

With potentially 20% of the UK workforce going to be affected by sickness we will be encouraging all our clients to discuss how we can best support their businesses in maintaining the desired staffing levels to maintain as close to a ‘Business as usual’ position as normal.

Client Visits

We’re very much ‘face to face’ people when it comes to business, we just need to change the format. We believe that to act responsibly and reduce the risk of infection that the right thing to do is to reduce the number of Client Visits significantly; The vast majority of our people have the ability to use zoom and/or Skype for remote meetings and this will be implemented as a ‘normal’ business practice immediately.