While other aspects of everyday life are shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the building industry is essential to America’s economy, and is still forging ahead. Construction jobs are carrying on, but according to several state associations, it’s a fluid situation in many regions. Things are changing daily, if not by the minute.
There have been mixed emotions about social distancing across the internet and social media. Some individuals believe it’s necessary, while others believe it’s inconvenient and blown out of proportion. Here's what we know:
Practicing social distancing helps to
- Reduce opportunities for disease transmission
- Reduce the number of sick patients
- Decrease the burden on health care systems and health care workers
- Prevent a quick spike in patients who are affected by the disease, which gives hospitals and health care workers more time to prepare and to take precautions to help protect us all
By practicing social distancing, you are not only protecting yourself, but everyone that you could potentially come into contact with as well. Although the symptoms for COVID-19 can take up to 14 days to be present, you could still be carrying the virus and could therefore be passing it on to others without realizing it.
Any person of any age and health status could become infected with COVID-19; however, the elderly and those who are immunocompromised are most susceptible and would likely have the most severe side effects from the virus. By choosing to social distance yourself, you are protecting those most vulnerable populations of people as well.
One of the social distancing measures that the Department of Public Health suggests conducting during a pandemic is that businesses should change company practices, set up flexible shift plans, have employees telecommute, and cancel any large meetings or conferences.
That might seem difficult to do in the construction space, where the majority of workers have work boots on the ground. However, many construction companies are implementing social distancing plans that include new technologies at their offices and job sites.
Employees can work while social distancing, using technology platforms that have been built to support remote accessibility and mobility.
To reduce human interaction, new technologies enable electronic ticketing and proof of delivery through an easy-to-navigate app on a mobile device.
Material suppliers and producers can share the data on paper tickets with customers through the app, and buyers can acquire the same information digitally. No touching materials or people; all can be done while maintaining a 6-foot distance (or, while you’re on the couch).
This is a quick and easy way to both provide and receive delivery ticket data in the cloud, remove hand-to-hand exchange of paper tickets between all personnel, and safely keep the critical delivery and acceptance of heavy materials to construction projects flowing.