Importance of Occupational and Personal Hygiene in the Workplace

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Hygiene is an important and critical part of every person's life. The importance of hygiene can best be understood by the fact that almost every religion on earth has preached hygiene. The benefits of hygiene are not only limited to the physical structure of a person, it also influences some psychological behaviors. It creates self-confidence, raises morale and increases the self-esteem of a person.

Why is hygiene so important? Why has man transformed his forests and land into cleaner streets and a proper society? The answer is simple. Hygiene is a measure of a person's lifestyle. A person who has good self hygiene not only makes it possible for himself to feel comfortable in his skin, but also helps others in his environment to work comfortably. A person with good values will never ignore their personal hygiene.

Every workplace has its standards and guidelines. Cleanliness and personal hygiene are always part of these standards and guidelines. All companies have a dress code. This dress code is part of the employees' self hygiene. Maintaining proper hygiene in the workplace is very important for the good reputation of the companies. Both the official authorities and the employees must take care of hygiene. No boss would want a dirty person to represent his company in the market or in front of the public. Similarly, no employee would want to work in a company with dirty toilets, cabins and the environment. The contribution of both parties is essential for the good reputation of the company.

The contribution of the authorities in the workplace:
Employee retention is one of the main concerns of businesses today. Keeping employees happy and satisfied in their workplace is very important for the company's continued success. Employees are strongly influenced by their workplace policy and their environment. An enticing workplace creates a good level of comfort for the employees. Keeping a workplace clean helps to create a good environment.

There are several key measures that can help to maintain hygiene in the workplace. Some of them are mentioned below:
  • Regularly emptying the waste bins
  • Regularly cleaning the toilets
  • Spraying a light air freshener at regular intervals
  • Cleaning the windows

Contribution of the employees:
What would happen if an employee who is supposed to give a presentation to a multinational company showed up with untidy hair, no tie, rough nails, dirty shoes and a smelly body? The answer is obvious: he is fired as soon as he sets foot in the office. The standard of hygiene of a company's employees gives an idea of how good the company is. Maintaining proper employee self hygiene is as critical to the company's reputation as their performance.

The following are some of the key measures employees take:
  • Maintaining proper dress codes
  • Take a bath every morning before coming into the office
  • Correct haircut and style
  • Polished shoes
  • Use of deodorant

Self hygiene greatly increases a person's value. If employees keep their hygiene up to date, they automatically fall into the boss's good books. In addition, a clean workplace ensures good health for employees and they are less prone to infectious diseases. Consequently, the performance of the employees is greatly increased.

2020 - Coronavirus
As an employer, what guidelines should I follow to limit the spread and impose a duty of care on my employees?
A number of large Australian companies have instructed team members who have recently visited affected areas to stay at home for 14 days to avoid possible spread.

If employers are concerned and wish to take precautions, they should follow the current recommendations of the AHPPC community. As such, an employer should:
  • Issue a general notice to all workers, indicating that he/she is trying to reduce the risk and respond to the outbreak, and that as such he/she has taken appropriate precautions
  • list the criteria for isolation
  • Give general health advice encouraging anyone who develops flu-like symptoms (including fever, cough, sore throat, runny nose or shortness of breath) to seek medical advice immediately
  • As a precautionary measure, advise that a safe environment be maintained and that care be provided for all employees
  • Repeat that you will continue to monitor the situation and will be guided in your response by advice from the Australian Government Department of Health
  • Suggest that employees keep up to date with the latest advice and information

Also Read: Guide for preparing the workplace for COVID-19

What other things should employers consider when the coronavirus occurs?

Employers should be aware that an employee who is absent from work as a precaution is entitled to full pay and should not be disadvantaged in any way. If possible, arrangements should be made to allow a person to work from home.
To avoid discrimination complaints, make sure you take the "front foot" and send a general notice to all employees. You must not target specific individuals.
The coronavirus situation is changing rapidly. Employers should keep up to date by following the advice of the federal and state governments and updating their communications to employees accordingly.

Read more... Supporting Human Resource Managers in Preparing for a Coronavirus Pandemic

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