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Daily COVID-19 Updates: April 24

April 24, 2020
Common Features of Best-Performing Companies; Trump Signs Fourth COVID-19 Stimulus Bill; A Clever Device to Keep Employees Socially Distant

The scale of the coronavirus is difficult to fully appreciate. More than a full month since the coronavirus was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization, more than 26 million people in the United States have lost their jobs and the government, as of today’s passage of a fourth stimulus bill, has allocated almost $3 trillion to help the economy survive what’s projected to be the worst downturn since before the Great Recession in 2009.

It’s still unclear when things will return to normal, if ever, or if a new post-virus normal will emerge. Several states have begun making their way towards normalcy by relaxing stay-at-home restrictions. Georgia lifted restrictions on hair salons and several other businesses today, and earlier in the week Florida reopened its beaches. If all goes to plan, other businesses will also begin to return to normal, likely in a series of phases. Barring a catastrophic second wave of coronavirus infections, the country should slowly begin to return to something approaching what it used to look like.

Companies Innovating, Surviving, and Thriving During the Pandemic

IndustryWeek reached out to manufacturers successfully innovating, improving or pivoting their production lines during the COVID-19 outbreak to ask what them what leadership traits or cultural quirks set their companies apart from the rest of the pack. A survey of 45 companies showed a handful of common themes around successfully adapting businesses: continuous improvement, effective R&D, and a shared sense of purpose. Read the full story here.

White House Signs New $484 Billion COVID-19 Relief Package

The House of Representatives passed its fourth COVID-19-related relief package on Thursday, and it was signed into law earlier today by President Trump. The latest law includes $250 billion to refill the Payroll Protection Program, plus additional money to help support minority and rural community small businesses and state testing programs. The government has now allocated at least $2.4 trillion to coronavirus relief. Read the full story here.

How Manufacturers are Keeping Employees Safe

Lawrence Whittle, CEO of Parsable, shared his thoughts on the critical role of validating safety checks for keeping employees safe during the unprecedented period of global pandemic. “Companies,” Whittle says, “need to be able to easily make additional changes to operating procedures at top speed.” Effective communication about expected safety guidelines is also key. Read the full story here.

One novel solution to easily maintaining one key safety guidelines: a small device that alerts any employee that approaches within two and a half meters of another employee. The Social Distancer, a device made by Promark Electronics Inc. and CMP Advanced Mechanical solutions, is a credit-card sized device that can instantly calculate the physical distance between employees and flash red, vibrate, and audibly alert them to stay distant. Read the full story here.

About the Author

Ryan Secard | Associate Editor


Focus: Workforce and labor issues; machining and foundry management

Associate Editor Ryan Secard covers topics relevant to the manufacturing workforce, including recruitment, safety, labor organizations, and the skills gap. Ryan has written IndustryWeek's Salary Survey annually since 2021 and has coordinated its Talent Advisory Board since September 2023.

Ryan got started at IndustryWeek in August 2019 as an editorial intern and was hired as a news editor in 2020 before his 2023 promotion to associate editor, talent. He has a Bachelor of Arts in English from the College of Wooster.

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