Deliveries, distribution and visitors
Protecting your workforce and those who come on-site
As a minimum we expect companies :
- to provide early clarity to their supply chain about honouring of orders in the system, linked to new production capacity and consumer demand/contracts
- to treat all site visitors including contractors, suppliers and those making deliveries, as if they were employees, ensuring they are offered the same protections and are expected to follow the same rules.
Early supplier engagement
The global nature of COVID-19 means it may have impacted on both current demand for some goods manufactured in Scotland and on normal supply chain relationships. Early engagement and continuing conversations with suppliers is recommended to understand how well placed suppliers can provide inputs at the level required to meet a company's expected demand after restarting production. This should include considering any additional logistical issues associated with the current functioning of international supply networks.
During the COVID‑19 pandemic minimising pressures on supply chains is paramount to ensure that suppliers at risk are better able to cope with the current crisis and ensure service continuity and delivery during and after the outbreak. Companies are encouraged to work with suppliers to understand the specific pressures they face and identify potential solutions on a case-by-case basis, including providing early clarity on the treatment of existing orders.
Many sites, especially larger sites, may normally have a number of contractors and visitors not employed by the company running the site. This presents increased risk of virus transmission if people do not adhere to the same interpretation of rules. To address this risk companies should consider limiting site access to those who need to be there for safe operation, ensuring safe working practices and production related activities and implementing a permit to work system for contractors and external visitors who still need to access the site. This should set out requirements for how everyone behaves on a site including entering and leaving the site, clarifying responsibilities for all around maintaining good hygiene and physical distancing.
Drivers accessing and leaving sites present another challenge and potential source of interaction or transmission to manage. Companies manufacturing essential goods like food manufacturers can provide good practice advice based on experience of continuing to operate at the current time. Measures introduced to maintain a safe working environment onsite, developed with suppliers and delivery companies has included looking to remove the need for documentation to change hands where possible by adopting electronic processes as well as reducing access to contact points by requiring drivers to remain in vehicles or providing access to facilities like toilets which are only for external visitors, therefore avoiding risks of cross contamination to or from the manufacturing company's staff.
Advanced Manufacturing Policy Team