COVID-19 Risk Assessment

Assessment completed by: Michele Pizzey, Director – michele@pjdtax.co.uk 

Date last updated: 29 June 2020

Date of next scheduled review: Ongoing – for 6th July opening to update actions

Risk title Description & consequenceMitigation
1. Spread of COVID-19 in the firm
  1. This will result in multiple individuals becoming infected and possibly seriously or fatally ill
  2. Vulnerable workers could be worst affected
  1. Directors and staff (where feasible and especially where vulnerable) to work from home and encourage good communication across office working and WFH colleagues
  2. Take steps to encourage flexibility in start and finish times/shift patterns, to reduce the number of people on site at any one time and to assist with avoiding commuting pinch points
  3. Specific desks and spaces not be to used to encourage physical distancing.  An employee’s on site attendance is subject to team Directors approval to ensure social distancing is possible.
  4. Putting in place social distancing markers and measures, taking away chairs, implementing one-way systems and/or maximum person limits etc in communal areas including kitchens and break out spaces
  5. Plastic screening is not deemed necessary to install due to ability to adequately social distance and the natural barrier provided by dual screen computer arrangements on desk for employees seated opposite.
  6. Due to adequate social distancing, face coverings will not be mandatory, but can be worn by employees at their own discretion
  7. No one feeling ill will be allowed to come to work in line with Government guidance
  8. Communication and awareness-raising posters referring to the above measures
  9. Enhanced cleaning regime to be adhered to by both employees after use and by our professional cleaners, including for kitchen, frequent touchpoints such as door handles, light switches, printers, phones, reception area using appropriate cleaning products and methods
  10. Hand washing awareness: see the NHS guidance
  11. Sanitation products (hand sanitiser, cleaning wipes) widely available.
  12. Reminding everyone of the public health advice on symptoms and self isolating/quarantine guidance through posters, leaflets and other materials made widely and prominently available: see the government guidance
2. Spread of COVID-19 to clients or visitors
  1. This will result in multiple individuals becoming infected and possibly seriously or fatally ill
  1. No External client face-to-face meetings to be undertaken currently.
  2. Face to face collection of ID for KYC can be undertaken with adherence to social distancing regulations and sanitisation of documents passed over.
  3. Internal meetings can be undertaken (eg for training, management meetings) with strict adherence to social distancing obligations.  1-hour upper limit on meetings and adequate ventilation in place.
  4. Upper limit on meeting numbers determined by available room size and social distancing guidance
  5. Meetings staggered to minimise congestion
  6. Enhanced cleaning regime, including before/between/after each individual meeting
  7. Sanitation products (hand sanitiser, cleaning wipes) available inside each meeting room
  8. No catering/refreshments inside meeting rooms
3. Suspected COVID-19 case in office
  1. This may result in the individual staff member experiencing medical distress on-site and could increase the risk of onward transmission of the virus among other people with whom the individual has been in proximity

 

  1. If anyone becomes unwell with a new continuous cough, a high temperature or loss of sense of smell in the workplace, they will be sent home and advised to follow the stay at home guidance
  2. Everyone in the office to be informed
  3. Where possible people work from home
  4. Reemphasise that no-one feeling ill is allowed to come to work
  5. Maintaining up-to-date contact information (including emergency contacts) for all partners and staff
  6. Record keeping on who is in and where in the office on a given day to aid potential contact-tracing efforts and processes
4. COVID-19 transmission via communal resources or areas
  1. This may result in increased risk of transmission, including to/from clients and visitors
  1. Newspapers and magazines removed from client lobby
  2. If advised that a member of staff or visitor in the building or office has developed COVID-19 the management team will consider Government guidance in place for advice and responsibilities in identified people who have been in contact with them and take on any actions or precautions
5. COVID-19 transmission via mail/packages
  1. This may result in increased risk of transmission by handling of objects
  1. Staff advised to clean any mail/post items delivered to their desks (wet wipes to be provided)
6. Mental health problems and poor wellbeing

 

  1. This may result from increased stress caused by home-working and the lockdown, potential bereavements, increased caring responsibilities, elevated incidence of anxiety and depression associated with isolation, concerns about personal and family circumstances and job security
  2. Staff members of BAME background may feel more uncomfortable coming back into the office
  1. Signpost to mental health resources such as Mind, Samaritans
  2. Regular internal communications from Directorship team emphasising self-care and regular and inclusive communication. The emphasis should also be on honesty and transparency about the difficulties the company is facing and how to best manage these together
  3. An open-door policy for those who need additional support
  4. Provide assurance over measures taken to protect employees’ health and safety
7. Public transport virus transmission

 

  1. Crowded and unsanitary conditions on public transport services
  1. Individuals who feel that they cannot travel safely to/from the office will not be required to do so. Private taxis made available for staff who need to be in the office.
  2. Remind employees of our interest-free loan scheme that makes buying a bicycle very cost-effective and remind of ample space for cycle storage on-site and building showers/changing rooms availability
8. COVID-19-related stigma and harassment

 

  1. Risk that there is an increase in targeted harassment or stigma directed at individuals who have been ill or are from a specific ethnic background
  1. Reporting channels to permit investigation and where proven appropriate misconduct procedures followed in cases of bullying and harassment
  2. Directors and managers to offer support to staff who are affected by COVID-19 or have a family member affected
  3. Ensure senior figures in the organisation issue and support messages about values and diversity and inclusion
9. Non-compliance with government regulations
  1. Risk that a member of the firm ignores firm’s guidance
  1. Communicate the importance of the adherence to the rules
  2. Stricter enforcement of rules against people continuing to attend the office while feeling unwell