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28 October 2022

Summer Workwear Guide:
How to Keep Workers Cool and Protected During the Hot Months

Woman wearing a red hard hat and light summer workwear

The summer season will soon be in full swing. Have you prepared your workforce for the shift to hotter temperatures? If not, now is the right time to spring into action. For some inspiration on what you need to be thinking about to keep employees cool and protected during the hottest season of the year, this guide details everything you need. From checking local temperatures to exploring different workwear types, building a solid safety policy and always buying good quality garments, here’s how to go about putting the best foot forward for your dedicated team. 


Check Local Temperatures

Although it may seem obvious at first, planning for summer workwear requires you to have a handle on local temperatures where the team is based. Some companies have employees all over the world, others in different parts of the country. Different departments will have varying conditions to deal with. Map out exactly where all your employees are based, ideally through the help of a safety officer, and research local summer temperatures in advance. That way, it’s possible to put together a plan that won’t have you falling behind and scrambling to introduce the appropriate workwear once temperatures are soaring.  


Know Your Workwear Types

Different garments are suited to different roles and conditions. There’s no “one size fits all” piece of workwear unfortunately, so it’s good to know the different types to consider to find the best fit. From conti suits (and their variations) to dust coats and thermal underwear, there are many options to explore. Corporate clothing also falls into workwear, highly important if specific departments have formal uniforms. Reputable suppliers tend to have a selection of conti, rain and boiler suits on offer too. Make sure your teams have what they need to perform their tasks well. 


Talk to Department Heads and Employees

It’s hard to assess the needs of employees without consulting them about it. A simple survey or specific conversations between the safety officer and heads of departments should provide a clear view of the team’s needs when it comes to workwear for the summer season. Some departments may be set, while others that operate outdoors will have different needs to be met. This is not only essential in terms of keeping them cool from a practical standpoint. The right protection is integral to protecting their health and safety, and avoiding a costly lawsuit that could have been prevented later. 


Build Workwear into Your Safety Policy

No matter the size of your time, workwear should be built into the broader safety policy. This creates specific conditions for teams to adhere to, will set out what they should be doing when temperatures rise, as well as ensuring that the company stays compliant from a regulatory standpoint. Don’t have a fixed safety policy in place? It’s time to get to work. Start by hiring a safety officer to take care of the logistics. They’ll likely need to do a full review of the existing policies, what people are wearing in their roles at the moment, and where there are gaps to be filled in the near future.


Mini worker figurines with short sleeved workwear


Tick the Boxes: Durability, Comfort and Practicality

Excellent workwear for summer should always tick three specific boxes: durability, comfort and practicality. Employees can’t be protected if they don’t have high quality garments that will keep them safe on the job. Comfort matters too, especially if they spend up to eight hours on the job on a given day. More importantly, workwear should be practical, allowing the wearer to do their tasks efficiently every time. When looking at different options, always consider these areas first before making a buying decision. 

Conduct Regular Safety Audits

Safety audits are integral to compliant and well regulated workplaces. Keeping workers protected and cool during the summer months means setting out key rules related to workwear to ensure this happens as a part of any safety audit. These should be conducted regularly, with checks in place to make sure that all departments are covered. Heatstroke is a good example of a potential problem when summer temperatures reach their peak. If your safety policy covers prevention and the audit checks whether the workwear reduces the risk of exposure, it’s a job well done. 

Explore Other Ways to Keep Workers Cool and Protected

Beyond workwear, it’s best to explore all the other ways to keep workers cool and protected while they’re on the job. This is good practice to avoid mishaps in the workplace, and to ensure a happy and thriving workforce. Something as simple as having a steady supply of clean water, offering shaded areas for regular recovery, or even working in specific rest periods after certain amounts of time in the sun can make a world of difference to guaranteeing the health of the team. 

A Wide Range of High Quality Options

For a wide range of workwear that won’t let you down ahead of the summer months, try G.Fox. We’re experts in the field with decades of experience across companies spanning South Africa and beyond. We’ve got options related to all the types mentioned earlier in the guide, with new stock being added to the catalogue regularly as well. If you need additional advice for keeping workers cool and protected during scorching summer months, our team is happy to help. We can also dictate the best fabrics to use for workwear based on the specific needs of your employees. There’s no point in taking a risk with the safety of the team. By following these steps, you’re more likely to reduce absenteeism and retain employees better in the long run too. 

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