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Whether your aquatics facility is closed due to COVID-19, planning to open soon or operating under new regulations, it’s clear COVID-19 is impacting facilities nationwide. The keys to navigating the pandemic are flexibility to implement new procedures quickly and confidence to ensure the compliance and safety of guests and employees alike. There has been much written about procedural changes that must happen, but far less about the tools needed to implement them. Digital technology is one of those tools that can help. Here’s how, in three key areas:

First, just because the facility is closed doesn’t mean maintenance requirements end — however, they will change. For example, local water chemistry requirements may change when closed. With configurable digital tools, simply update the tests to comply with new requirements. Maintenance checklists might need to be modified during the closure. Again, a digital system with configurable checklists can be updated as needed so the facility can be properly maintained during the shutdown. Plus, the system documents the history of who did what and when, so whenever a maintenance person records inspections, issues or chemical readings, it can all be reviewed from your laptop or mobile device. When working remotely, it’s advantageous to use digital tools to access complete records rather than easily lost or contaminated paper records, or waiting on someone else to provide updates.

Second, a big concern voiced by the industry is keeping staff engaged — or ramping them up quickly — when reopening. Many facilities use blended learning programs that may be implemented manually, but it’s strongly preferable to have digital tools to track progress. Digital tracking allows participants to record and upload proof of completion for online learning. From a remote office, you can quickly see which staff or applicants have completed training and determine who’s in the best position when you’re able to conduct live training. An added benefit is it keeps your staff active and interested in maintaining their training.

Finally, once open, your employees and members can be confident facility staff is performing the proper cleaning and disinfectant procedures required. Sure, you can download CDC guidelines and post them on a wall or place them in a binder. But, what if you could simply update your procedures in a system your staff is able to access from their mobile device and record their compliance as they perform their work electronically? Additionally, if you wished to make the information public or provide it to health departments, you could grant online access to reports that demonstrate you’re doing exactly what needs to be accomplished to ensure everyone’s safety.

As procedures change or seem to be in flux, every aquatics facility has the responsibility to ensure compliance with updated CDC guidance and the safety of everyone entering the facility. Adding digital record-keeping tools into your current aquatics tech stack helps provide the needed flexibility and confidence as we navigate the pandemic. The time for implementing digital documentation tools into your operations is now.

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