Factories across India have partially resumed operations even as the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak continues to be a serious cause of concern. With manufacturing units given the responsibility to maintain social distancing and employee safety, a new set of roles called shop-floor coordinators and sanitisation servicemen has opened up in India.
These new job roles would involve hiring entry-level talent with a basic understanding of the importance of sanitation, hygiene and social distancing. The pay? Between Rs 12,000 and Rs 14,000 per month.
India has about 2,37,000 factories and each factory would need multiple such staff depending on the number of workers in the unit and factory size. Factories do not have staff purely assigned to maintain hygiene, safety and social distancing and the home ministry mandate to keep production units virus-free has led to the new job roles being created.
In an interaction with Moneycontrol, Sudeep Sen, business head for industrial, manufacturing and engineering segments at TeamLease Services said job roles like sterility servicemen and shop-floor coordinators have come up due to the social distancing mandate amidst COVID-19 pandemic.
“Companies realised that they need dedicated coordinators for this purpose and hence have been hiring them for the next three to six months on contract. As factories open up and start getting in more workers for production, the need for such staff to manage the shop-floor will increase,” he added.
Frequently Asked Questions
A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.
There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.
Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.
For shop-floor coordinators, the work involves enforcing social distancing at the manufacturing unit, be it the canteen, production area and assembly points. Government rules state that two people must maintain a minimum distance of six feet at all times in the workplace.
To be eligible for the job, a basic understanding of what a certain temperature reading means, how to keep the workplace sanitised and quick reflexes to alert people on maintaining social distancing are required.
Sen said that these individuals would also need to be prepared for any workplace emergencies including workers suddenly falling ill or someone testing COVID-19 positive.
While some companies are hiring these persons on a three- to six- month contract, Sen said that a few firms are also outsourcing it to facility management companies to get additional staff for these specific disinfection and shop-floor coordination roles.
With respect to the sanitisation servicemen, companies are looking for people who would be responsible for maintaining hygiene standards. This would include disinfection of workers at the time of entry as well as disinfecting the uniforms as also the transport vehicles being used.
Sen said that these coordinators would be responsible to ensure that basic instructions related to not sitting close to each other in canteens, not standing inside the washrooms for too long and wearing masks at all times are followed. Any aberration would mean that the concerned employee would be alerted.Follow our full coverage of the coronavirus pandemic here.