Creating a Safe Work Environment

We understand the complications that come with operating a business in the current environment. Take a look at these resources that can help keep your agency safe in the COVID-19 situation.

Priority #1: Your team’s health and safety

In all of the visits that we have made to independent agencies across Ohio they all have one thing in common – they care deeply about their people.

We know that your team and your customers are your highest priority, so in this time of great uncertainty, clear and concise information about what you are doing to keep your team safe will instill confidence and a level of comfort that’s needed to be most productiveOutlining and providing your team with the thoughtful and deliberate steps you are taking to keep them safe is key.  We know that your team will find great comfort in knowing that their health and safety is of the utmost importance to you.  

We surveyed agents across Ohio and know that over 70% of you do not plan to transition your team  to a remote work environment. This means that you will need to take every precaution to keep your team  safe as you work together to continue to help your customers navigate their insurance needs during this tumultuous time. Check out this info-graphic for some tips to consider.


Safety Measures

Here are some key safety measures you can implement in your agency during COVID-19: 

1. Protect your team.  Ask each of your employees if they need a workplace accommodation based on their specific situation.  The employees that are in the highest risk categories for COVID-19 are :

    • People with serious chronic medical conditions like : 
      • Heart disease  
      • Diabetes 
      • Lung disease   
      • Compromised immune systems  

2. Educate on COVID-19 symptoms     

    • Provide your employees with the symptoms of COVID-19  
    • If any employees exhibit symptoms – send them home  
    • Appoint a person to check in with each employee to discuss possible exposure, symptoms and recent travel.   
    • Minimize the interactions with all employees that have had any heighted risk of exposure to the virus withing the last 14 days.

3. Understand employee circumstances  

    • Gain an understanding of each employee’s situation 
      • Childcare needs give the recent closures 
      • Recent travel and exposure 
      • Their current leave time available  
      • What is their ability to work from home? 
    • Make any accommodations that you can to keep your employees productive and safe 

4. Provide necessary supplies for a sanitary workplace 

    • Disinfectant wipes, cleaning products hand sanitizer and tissues should be made available  
    • Implement cleaning procedures and increased frequency for all common spaces and workstations 
    • Identify any additional measures being taken by your cleaning service, if applicable 





5. Encourage employees to spread out   

    • Have employees keep their distance from each other (6 feet is recommended)  
    • Do not hold any meeting of more than 5 employees and consider using video conferencing to conduct meetings to avoid close proximity to each other 

6. Institute a work-from-home policy  

    • Review your operations and determine if there are positions and duties that can be handled remotely.  
    • If so, develop policies and procedures to allow employees to work from home.  
    • Invest in the technology to share files, route calls, and video conference when necessary.  Consider rotating work from home days to make sure your infrastructure is working and limiting the number of people in the office on any given day. 

7. Implement a company-wide travel & customer visit policy 

    • Limit all non-essential business travel  
    • Minimize in-person meetings and institute a no handshake rule with customers  
    • Utilize video conferencing or other communication tools for customer meetings  
    • Consider offering remote work options to employees who must use crowded public transportation to commute to work  – not sure this really applies to Ohio – you may want to remove 

8. Over Communicate  

    • Schedule time to communicate regularly – video conferencing, phone conference, email  
    • Keep your team up to date on the measures being taken to keep them safe 
    • Share news and other resources that become available in the coming days and weeks 
    • Listen and ask for feedback on any challenges they are experiencing given this unique situation  

OIA is here for you.

OIA is here to provide you with the information, resources and guidance you need to get through this incredibly unique time in our history.  If you need more information about any of the topics covered here, please do not hesitate to contact us at or (614)552-8000.  


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