How the Coronavirus is Impacting the US Furniture Industry
Chances are you’ve now heard about the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) that’s become a worldwide pandemic. Coming out of Wuhan China, the virus has impacted nearly every aspect of daily life for individuals in various countries. Schools have cancelled class, families have called off vacations, and offices have instructed their employees to work remotely. Restaurants, bars, and cafes are closed. Only supermarkets and pharmacies remain open, and their products are absolutely flying off the shelves.
Among the countries where the pandemic is the currently the worst are China, South Korea, Japan, Italy, and Iran. The impact of the virus has even reached the furniture industry because of how deeply it affects daily life. Here’s what you should know.
Interior Contract Services Inc. & Teknion: What are We doing?
Given the international business we maintain Interior Contract Services Inc. and Georgia Office Interiors began preparations for the arrival of the coronavirus nearly a month ago in our Orlando and Atlanta offices. This involved ordering additional N95 mask for our staff, obtaining disinfectants and gloves to allow our installers to be outfitted appropriately in the event they were conducting an install in a high-risk area.
Given the extensive amount of healthcare work we have undertaken over the past 35 years, our office furniture installers are well-versed in universal precautions and steps they need to take to keep themselves safe from germs or viruses in an install environment. In addition, training was held with staff and guidelines issued on the best ways to keep themselves free from germs and viruses. Our employees were also given the option over the next several weeks to work remotely, if needed, and told not to report to work under any circumstances if they were ill or had a household family member who was ill.
In addition, a rigid process was put into place nearly two-weeks ago on our operations side where our installation truck fleet is wiped down every day, at the end of shift, following installs throughout the region. To reduce social interaction and aid in social distancing only one member of the team is coming into the warehouse at a time, with the others going home to shower and rest to be ready for installs the next morning. In addition, we have contracted with outside installation companies to prep for a surge of relocation, install request from clients and new customers in the coming weeks.
Pandemics and national emergencies provide opportunities for companies like Interior Contract Services Inc. & Georgia Office Interiors to rise to the occasion to help our existing customer base, especially those requiring healthcare furniture, government furniture, or GSA furniture. Many will need additional seating and tables in the coming weeks and months to assist with citizens requiring government and healthcare services.
In closing, you may reach us 24/7 during this coronavirus pandemic. Please visit our website www.interiorcontract.com and use our live chat feature to speak with someone anytime day or night. Emergency calls and request will be escalated, and you will speak directly with someone on our team about your request. You may also reach us by calling 407-294-4141.