5 Benefits of Pre-Shift Employee Temperature Checks

photo of a thermometer, which can be used for employee temperature checks

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To perform employee temperature checks for COVID or not? That’s kind of a big question these days. We think you should, and we’ll tell you why! COVID-19 has been tough for many reasons. One really tough thing about it is that there’s just nothing we’ve found yet that is extremely effective at preventing the spread of this virus on its own. Nothing that’s very feasible, anyway. Social distancing and staying home have been pretty helpful, but those aren’t always possible. Luckily, there are lots of other little things we can do to help control the spread.

One thing you can do as a business operator is temperature screening, or employee temperature checks before the start of each shift. Fever is one of the most common symptoms of COVID-19 and it’s easy to identify, so checking temperatures is a good place to start. Obviously, you’ll want to keep any employee running a fever away from your other staff and customers if at all possible, at least until you know it’s safe for them to come back. Keep in mind that fever isn’t the only symptom of COVID-19 and doesn’t appear in 100% of cases. It’s impossible to catch and eliminate every potential exposure, but temperature screening gives you an advantage. Even this small advantage can help save lives, which makes it worth the effort in the end. If this isn’t convincing enough on its own, here are 5 more reasons why your business should practice temperature screening:

1. Temperature screening is fast, simple, and easy. 

Fever is one of the most common COVID-19 symptoms, and luckily it’s extremely easy to identify. Temperature checks take only a few seconds and don’t have to be performed by a medical professional – it’s something everyone knows how to do. When something as quick and easy as checking a temperature can catch one case and help prevent it from spreading, why not?  

2. Temperatures can be checked with zero contact. 

Temperature checks can be done by a designated person using a contactless, infrared thermometer, or employees can check their own temperatures – so there’s no need to get too close. It’s important that temperature checks be done promptly and safely, otherwise they won’t be as effective. 

3. Why not help your employees and customers feel safer?

Employee temperature checks are a simple way to make your employees feel safer coming into work. This practice can also help your customers feel safer when they choose to do business with your store or restaurant, whether they come inside or stay curbside. We’re probably not to the point where everyone should feel completely comfortable when going out to public places, but this is one small thing your business can do to ease those who have to. 

4. Checking and recording temperatures provides documentation, which can give your business an advantage in legal issues.   

Because we’ve never really gone through anything quite like this, laws and legal issues associated with COVID-19 are pretty murky. Some places require certain preventative measures, like face coverings and temperature checks and some places don’t – and the rules are always changing. Practicing and recording temperature checks could do more than protect the health of employees and customers. Doing so provides written documentation that an employer and place of business has taken important steps to follow local ordinances and operate as safely as possible. 

5. Ultimately, temperature screening saves your business money. 

When staff members have to miss work, there’s potential for your business to lose money. That money could be lost paying sick leave, or even a missing sale due to being understaffed. Even worse is when businesses must temporarily shut down and quarantine because they have too many cases. Your business thrives when your employees thrive, so keeping them healthy and at work is best for all involved. If nothing else, temperature screening provides an extra opportunity to reduce the number of potential exposures to your employees and customers. Preventing even a few cases will help your business save money during a time when saving is so important.


If you want to practice temperature screening and tracking for your business, or improve your current process, good news! TimeForge’s labor management software now supports temperature tracking, and we can help you get started. Our temperature tracking features are easy to set up and use. With the features enabled, TimeForge will prompt employees to record their temperatures as they clock-in for their shift. The software tracks and keeps temperatures for your records in one, easy-to-find place. These features are flexible and work on browser-based clock-ins, mobile clock-ins, and on our hardware timeclocks. You can also adjust the settings based on location and department for added convenience. It’s also completely confidential, so your employees’ health information will be 100% private. To learn more about how it works and how to set it up, check out this how-to guide.

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