Sweeps working procedures
This guidance was issued to Guild members at the start of the crisis in March and again in early May as sweeps were starting to get back to work.
There is no one size fits all. Each of us is in a slightly different situation and the Guild can’t tell you what to do. But we can offer guidance on your company policy and your working procedures.
Many of your customers are looking for reassurance before booking. They will want to know what steps you are taking to reduce the risks as you come to work in their home.
The most important thing is to communicate with your customers. It will make ALL the difference.
See the sample procedures below. We have brought together a range of procedures and how to communicate them. We’ve covered the basics. You’ll need to choose what suits you and remove or add anything that you think appropriate.
Keep your customer communication simple. If you are sending a letter or email, we’d suggest a maximum of one side of A4. A simple introduction, bullet points for procedures and finishing with an invitation to call you will work best.
Get your procedures onto your website or social media pages. Many existing customers are checking websites etc. before they pick up the phone. Make sure you can easily email your procedures and perhaps even carry a few printed copies with you.
The “Responsible and Professional Chimney Sweep Company” would like to assure all our customers that we take safety seriously. We have safety procedures in place to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Example Policy & procedures to consider :
BEFORE coronavirus we always operated our business with strict regard to safety procedures which protect us as well as you and your property. We use appropriate sheeting to protect floors and carpets and proper dust control measures are normal. We use appropriate dust masks and clean gloves for every job as standard.
We now have ENHANCED protection in place:
- We will ask you to confirm that everyone in your household is free of virus symptoms and that no-one is isolating for 10 days before the appointment date. We will confirm the same for our household. If anything changes before the appointment date, we will contact one another to rearrange.
- We will explain our safety procedures and customer checklist. See details – on our website – www……..
- We will contact you the day before your appointment to confirm the health status of your and of our household. We will also ask this as we arrive.
- Please ensure that the route to your chimney / fire is clear and there is adequate space for us to work. Clear out any ashes and move furniture and ornaments where possible.
- Please ventilate the room/s with open windows ahead of our visit where possible.
- We will enter your property wearing mask and gloves. These will remain on for the duration of the visit.
- We will observe recommended social distancing and ask that you remain in another room during the sweeping process.
- A clean / disinfected / disposable sheet (delete as applicable to you) will be placed on your floor / carpet.
- We will issue a certificate as usual (insert your procedure here e.g. please use your own pen to sign it / we will issue an digital certificate).
- Payment procedures (insert yours here).
- We will remove and secure / dispose of any consumables appropriately. Used sheets will be disinfected / packaged for cleaning.
- Finally, we will remove gloves etc. and apply hand sanitiser.
We regret we are unable to accept tea and biscuits for now 😊.
If you need advice or wish to make a booking, please call: …….
Additional notes for you the sweep.
PPE is part of sweep DNA. Working routines and procedures are what we do, all day, every day. Adding in a few new procedures is simple for us. When it comes to working in people’s homes in the current situation, we are well equipped. You just need to let your customers know. And not just the existing customers, new ones too will be looking for the best prepared sweeps.
Once again, the above list are suggestions and guidance and you must choose what’s right for you and your customers. See this link for official government guidance. https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19/homes