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Using radios to minimize employee contact and enable social distancing

Warehouse Employee With RadioIt's no secret that two way radios are great for managing the social distancing of your business or organization with customers and the public. From curbside service to managing visitor entry, business radios enable you to service your customers more efficiently while protecting both parties and abiding by the new social distancing rules of engagement. This isn't limited to front-facing transactions, either. A fleet of business radios can also benefit your internal operations, because they reduce direct, close contact between your employees or staff.

Radios can reduce employee contact considerably. For example, fewer face-to-face meetings are required between managers and other staff members, as radios provide instant communications at a distance. A clerk at the front desk can instantly call for assistance or report an incident at the push of button, without interacting in person. Shift changes can be coordinated without face-to-face contact and staff breaks can be handled safely with remote communications. There's no need for close interaction during much of the work shift. With radios, over-the-air contacts can help your operation remain contagion free.

This method of wireless communication provides another important benefit. In addition to enabling the recommended social distancing, business two way radios empower your workers to respond and react more quickly.

Instead of walking to the back of the stockroom to find that size 9 sneaker, a shoe store clerk can call to check for its availability while serving the next customer. The cart attendant at the local supermarket can immediately be called back inside the building without the manager spending ten minutes in the parking lot on a search. As a result, you'll likely see improved efficiency by using radios. Greater operating efficiency translates into lower operating costs, adding to the bottom line. Tasks take time, and time is money. Radios can save you both. Considering this, radio communications may be practically indispensible for both the profitability and safety of your entire operation.

But before you jump onto an international, online mass marketplace and order a pack of cheap, generic walkie talkies, it is important to understand that a radio is not a one-size-fits-all solution. There are many different types of radios out there, and many, many models from which to choose. They may operate on different radio bands and radio services, some of which may or may not be feasible or even allowed in your area for your particular business operation.

Every company is different, and your business may have needs that require a more customized solution. This is where our Business Radio Buyer's Guide can help.

The Buy Two Way Radios Buyer's Guide is an excellent resource for business owners who need an optimized solution for wireless communications, but don't have the time, resources or inclination to research everything about radio technology (time is money, right?). The guide is easy to use, and quickly narrows your search based on your type of business, as well as your requirements, budget and needs.

Professional two way radios are often designed and manufactured for specific types of businesses or industries. Here are some examples, along with a few recommended radios made for use in those niches. These general recommendations may help lead you to the right radio for your situation.

Dining, shopping and marketplaces
Restaurants, retail stores, mom-and-pop shops and many other localized, on-site businesses may only need a small, lightweight radio for light duty use indoors. The Kenwood ProTalk LT PKT-23, Motorola CLS1410 or Motorola DLR1020 are perfect choices for these types of businesses. The Motorola radios even have antimicrobial housings to inhibit the growth of bacteria and mold, a nice feature to have in a restaurant or diner.

Big box businesses with a small box budget
For larger facilities that need easy to manage, general purpose radios with high power at a low price, the Olympia P324 and Midland MB400 will give you solid performance without breaking the bank. These are medium duty transceivers with standard features that are also repeater capable.

Larger facilities
If you have a large facility with many floors or lots of walls, a high power 4-5 watt radio would probably be the best choice. Many radios in this category, such as the Motorola VX-261 or Icom F2000 also support repeaters. That means if you need to increase your range in the future with a repeater, you don't have to replace your radios.

Hotel security, malls or commercial sites
Larger commercial operations with multiple departments may need more than just simple on-site communications. Commercial tier radios such as the Motorola CP200d or SL300 provide advanced features and functionality for more expanded operations.

Industrial, manufacturing and warehouse operations
If your company needs heavy duty radios with great clarity for high noise environments, the Kenwood TK-3400-U16P or Motorola RMU2080d may be what you need.

License Free radios
Many of the radios listed above require an FCC radio license to operate business radios on assigned frequencies, but there are certain business class radios that are "license free" or, more officially, licensed by rule, meaning that you don't need a license at all to use them on their designated services. These radios are lower powered, but are nonetheless quite capable for use in many business environments and situations. The Motorola DTR600 is a digital model with great coverage indoors and a lot of powerful features. The Wouxun KG-805M is a 2 watt radio MURS radio that operates on 5 VHF frequencies and works very well for large retailers and big box stores. It's also quite rugged and is compatible with a large assortment of audio accessories from name brand manufacturers.

Between buildings, locations, or extended distances
If your company has a computer network with wireless connectivity and multiple buildings or locations, the Icom IP100H Two Way Radio for Wireless Networks (WiFI) may be exactly what you need. The IP100H connects over the air and directly to your network through a wireless controller for end-to-end voice communications without the use of repeaters. If wifi is available throughout facility, range concerns are totally eliminated. The IP100H also has advanced digital features and high quality, full duplex audio. IP radios are not traditional radios, so there is not much of a learning curve for support if your company has an IT department. The IP100H is also license free!

Clearly, two-way radios are quite useful to minimize employee contact and enable social distancing. The challenge is choosing the right radios for your business or organization.  Our Business Radio Buyer's Guide at Buy Two Way Radios can make the choice a lot easier. If your business is even more specialize or has very specific requirements, no problem! Just give us a call at 1-800-584-1445 and we will be happy to help find a solution for your radio needs.

Download this pdf and learn how Motorola CLS and DLR radios plus callboxes can increase efficiency and enable social distancing in your business!

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