Apple’s global supply chain is making security changes to better protect workers during the COVID 19 pandemic, as outlined in the company’s 2020 Supplier Responsibility Report. Sabih Khan, Apple’s senior vice president of operations and responsible for the company’s global supply chain, explained the changes the company’s suppliers are making in a letter to the beginning of the report.
With its global supply chain, the company has “worked on a number of safeguards that are appropriate to the circumstances in individual countries, including health examinations, limitation of density and strict adherence to social distance in their facilities,”
According to the letter, Apple requires the use of personal protective equipment at work and “in all public areas”. Apple has worked with its supply chain partners to implement “improved deep cleaning protocols” and to provide masks and disinfectants to workers, Khan said.
Apple has also worked with suppliers to change the floor plans of factories, introducing flexible hours and staggered shifts so employees can “maximize interpersonal space,” he said.
“From the beginning, we worked with our suppliers to develop and implement a plan that put people’s health first,” said Khan. “Thousands of Apple employees have worked tirelessly to implement this plan in collaboration with our suppliers around the world.”
In April, Apple CEO Tim Cook reportedly informed employees that the company would likely do temperature testing and social distancing if its employees returned to the company’s offices. Some employees may return to these offices soon. And after all retail stores outside the United States were closed in mid-March, some stores in Idaho, South Carolina, Alabama, and Alaska appear to be opening sometime this week, and employees in those stores will need to perform temperature tests and wear masks.