UMA Logo
If you missed our prior updates, visit our website

The UMA’s Center for Business and Continuous Improvement is gathering information to help Utah manufacturers deal with the latest COVID-19 related information. UMA’s Center exists to directly help Utah manufacturing companies enhance their competitiveness, productivity, and performance.

If you have any questions you would like addressed in future updates, or feedback about this information, please contact the UMA Center Director, Ryan Mecham at .
Best Practices from Utah Manufacturing Companies on Dealing with COVID-19

The Utah Manufacturers Association is conducting small round table sessions with Utah manufacturers about their best practices for dealing with COVID-19. Small, medium, and large companies have participated and wish to share this about their experiences: 

  • Innovate - Companies are innovating to incorporate essential business practices and processes in their operations in order to keep open and operating.
  • Planning and Communication
  • Early planning and communication between teams to get a plan in place before an outbreak or situation occurs is vital.
  • Operations team, HR, and Sales and Marketing several times a week or even daily in order to evaluate and implement the current CDC and other recommendations. Other discussion points involve evaluating employee cases and completing employee tracing so a plan is in place if there was a positive test.
  • Online resources and handouts are made available to employees so they can be informed on current information.
  • Create scripts for managers and floor leaders for a positive COVID-19 result, and when employees need to self quarantine.
  • Non-production and Production Employees
  • Allow anyone possible to work remotely.
  • For other teams such as production support, engineering and quality implementing rotating shifts. For example, two days remote, three onsite days, or one week on shift and one week off shift. This helps maintain a low number of employees on the site and limit interaction with other employees.
  • For employees onsite some companies are staggering shift start times and providing a gap between start times to allow one shift to leave the area before the next shift arrives.
  • Revisions to existing policy to allow for the comfort and safety of employees. For example areas for employees to take breaks, allowing them to go outside or into their vehicle.
  • Implement work zones 
  • Analyze traffic patterns of employees to reduce an employees footprint in the plant or workplace. Direct employees for a point of entry and exit and area of workspace. By keeping employees in certain areas it eliminates contaminating multiple areas if an employee tests positive.
  • Post signs about the rules of social distancing throughout the building.
  • Create different cells or teams in case someone becomes infected to minimize the loss of production employees.
  • Have teams or “cells” use different entrances to minimize possible spread.
  • Separate teams / departments from each other.
  • Common Areas - Lunch and break rooms have tables and chairs are all spaced six feet apart. Cleaning wipes on each table as well as a cleaning crew cleaning after occupancy. Food services have changed to grab and go operations with six feet spacing marked on the floor to maintain social distancing.
  • Cleaning 
  • Internal cleaning teams and bringing in external cleaning crews to clean common and workplace areas.
  • Construct temporary barriers from wooden frames with plastic to minimize contact on assembly lines that are in close proximity to each other
  • Stagger lunch and break times
  • Stagger when shifts begin and end
  • Move tables further apart to maintain social distance
  • Move designated smoking areas further from the buildings to ease the minds of those concerned about airborne contamination
  • Have multiple locations with hand sanitizer throughout the building
  • Policies - Removing the disciplinary requirements on employees for self quarantine, employee illness or to help a family member. Companies are working through sick time and vacation with employees as needed.
  • Temperature Monitoring - Employee temperature monitoring is in place some companies are onsite and others are off-site currently. Employees are self certified on taking a temperature and every employee takes their temperature before their shift. Nurses are available onsite to assist employees that are feeling ill during their shift.
  • SBA and PPP Loans - While companies have found challenges in securing loan funding some companies have been approved for PPP loans and are awaiting funds.
  • Keep Employees from Becoming Lax in Social Distancing
  • Make all communication transparent and give employees a source so that all communication is consistent and accurate.
  • Remind employees that wearing a face cloth or a mask does not permit you to be closer than the recommended six foot social distance.
  • Post signs throughout the building in multiple locations.
  • Have employees document who they were in contact with at the end of their shifts.
Fox Business Clip on Manufacturers Repurposing Lines for COIVD-19 Response 

Watch National Association of Manufacturers President and CEO Jay Timmons on Fox Business discuss the process for manufacturers to repurpose their lines during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Top 4 FAQs about the Paycheck Protection Program

Posted by our friends at the World Trade Center

Since launching into action last Wednesday, the Utah Economic Task Force Rapid Response Team (RRT) has helped more than 1,000 Utah companies find solutions to Covid-19 business challenges. The RRT, which is comprised of 50+ local volunteers, has identified the top 4 frequently asked questions to share with the business community.

To receive assistance from the RRT, go here and submit a help request. Someone from the team will follow up to not just pass along information, but to solve problems and provide solutions for your business.
Question 1: What qualifies as “payroll costs?”

Answer: Payroll costs consist of compensation to employees (whose principal place of residence is the United States) in the form of:
  • Salary
  • Wages
  • Commissions, or similar compensation
  • Cash tips or the equivalent (based on employer records of past tips or, in the absence of such records, a reasonable, good-faith employer estimate of such tips)
  • Payment for vacation, parental, family, medical, or sick leave
  • Allowance for separation or dismissal
  • Payment for the provision of employee benefits consisting of group health care coverage, including insurance premiums, and retirement
  • Payment of state and local taxes assessed on compensation of employees
  • And for an independent contractor or sole proprietor, wage, commissions, income, or net earnings from self-employment or similar compensation.

Question 2. Is there anything that is expressly excluded from the definition of payroll costs?

Answer: Yes. The Act expressly excludes the following:
  • Any compensation of an employee whose principal place of residence is outside of the United States, including J-1 and H2A workers.
  • The compensation of an individual employee in excess of an annual salary of $100,000, prorated as necessary.
  • Federal employment taxes imposed or withheld between February 15, 2020 and June 30, 2020, including the employee’s and employer’s share of FICA (Federal Insurance Contributions Act) and Railroad Retirement Act taxes, and income taxes required to be withheld from employees.
  • And qualified sick and family leave wages for which a credit is allowed under sections 7001 and 7003 of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (Public Law 116–127).

Question 3: Where can I apply for the Paycheck Protection Program?

Answer: You can apply for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) at any lending institution that is approved to participate in the program through the existing U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) 7(a) lending program and additional lenders approved by the Department of Treasury.

This could be the bank or credit union you already use, or a nearby bank or credit union. There are thousands of financial institutions that already participate in the SBA’s lending programs, including numerous community banks.

You do not have to visit any government institution to apply for the program. The Utah Bankers Association posted a list of banks authorized to assist businesses here . Utah's Credit Unions posted a similar list here . You can also find SBA-approved lenders in your area through SBA’s online Lender Match tool.

Having a hard time finding a lender? Reach out to the RRT. They can provide examples of specific lenders that are accepting applications from any Utah small business. Need additional help? You can call your local Small Business Development Center and they will provide free assistance and guide you to more lenders in your community.  

Question 4: If I get an EIDL and/or an Emergency Economic Injury Grant, can I get a PPP loan?

Answer: Yes! Whether you’ve already received an EIDL unrelated to COVID-19 or you receive a COVID-19 related EIDL and/or Emergency Grant between January 31, 2020 and June 30, 2020, you may also apply for a PPP loan.

If you ultimately receive a PPP loan or refinance an EIDL into a PPP loan, any advance amount received under the Emergency Economic Injury Grant Program would be subtracted from the amount forgiven in the PPP. However, you cannot use your EIDL for the same purpose as your PPP loan. For example, if you use your EIDL to cover payroll for certain workers in April, you cannot use PPP for payroll for those same workers in April, although you could use it for payroll in March or for different workers in April.

Information on Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) can be found here .
The National Association of Manufacturers Assembling a Database for COVID-19 Medical Suppliers and Consumers 

We encourage all manufacturers that can provide crucial supplies to help with the COVID-19 epidemic to click here and add your abilities to a national database used by the National Association of Manufacturers and FEMA. 

Also, if you are looking for COVID-19 related medical and PPE supplies, click here
If you would like to learn how UMA's Center can help you, please contact
Ryan Mecham, Director of UMA's Center for Business and Continuous Improvement, at or 801-557-9105.
Utah Manufacturers Association | Website

To receive future communications from the Utah Manufacturers Association please Click Here