What are we doing to prepare our dancewear stores to welcome customers and employees back?
COVID-19 Cleaning and Safety Protocols at Instep
Your health and safety are of utmost importance to us. As is the health and safety of our employees. We are sifting through the Health and Safety Guidelines provided as reference for the Retail Sector to ensure we are doing everything we can to prepare our stores to welcome customers back in safely.
As you can imagine, this presents a whole bunch of new requirements that we want to make sure we get right! Here are some things we are currently working on and some of the changes you can expect to see in our stores when we re-open to the public:
- -thorough cleaning and sanitization of both retail locations
- -purchasing PPE for our employees (gloves, masks and face shields)
- -setting up hand sanitization stations at the front door for customers to use upon entry and exit
- -setting up separate hand sanitization stations for employees and particularly at the cash desk
- -installing plexiglass barriers at the cash desk to minimize transmission when we have to get a little closer than 2m/6ft
- -wiping down our cash desk and POS debit/credit machines after each customer/transaction
- -marking 2m/6ft distance markers on our sales floor to ensure everyone knows how to keep a safe distance
- -for now we will be closing our public washrooms and coffee station (Oakville) for the safety of all
- -we are working on the guidelines for operating change rooms safely (currently these require actual doors and not curtains). For this reason, we will not be allowing the use of our changerooms at the moment
- -we are working on the guidelines for doing shoe fittings safely. This will definitely put us within 2m/6ft of each other so we are working on a protocol that ensures the safety of both customer and employee
- -we will be limiting the number of customers allowed in our store at one time (this will be at our discretion for the moment)
- -we will also be asking customers to visit with only one dancer and one guardian (no siblings or other family members please)
- -Challenge #1 - Trying on Dancewear/Dance Shoes
- -we know that a big part of shopping in a dance store is trying on bodysuits, dance shorts, etc, and dance shoes
- -this presents a problem because sometimes the item you try on isn't a perfect fit so you need to try on something else
- -we are working to figure out how we can handle tried on but unpurchased items safely and ensure they are clean and ready for the next customer
- -we know that a period of isolation may be required
- -we know that we can't simply wipe down bodysuits and ballet slippers with Lysol!
- -as soon as we have some guidance on this, and a plan, we will let you know
- -Challenge #2 - Hangers for Merchandising Dancewear
- -hangers present a unique challenge
- -they are a high touch surface in a dance store as our customer often search through bodysuits and dancewear on a rack
- -we have a huge selection of dancewear and with that choice comes this unique challenge
- -cleaning every hanger after a customer has been in the store to browse seems impossible and not a timely solution
- -we are exploring solutions to this "browsing" issue, including personal shopping appointments where only our gloved employee touches the hangers for you while you shop (gloves can be disposed of after a personal shopping experience, making it safe for the next customer to browse with assistance)
- -this is a work in progress at the moment
- -reduced store hours to allow employees to clean and sanitize all surfaces at the end of each day
This is a work in progress. Although we are very excited to have the green light from the provincial government to re-open on Tuesday May 19th, we are just NOT quite ready yet. Rest assured, we are working diligently to solve these new problems, and as soon as we're ready to open safely, you'll be the first to know!
We are however ready to roll out our Curbside Pickup on Tuesday May 19th. This first step will allow you some ordering and payment flexibility as we have several options ready to go! Order and pay with your credit card online (as you have always been able to do), but now you can select "Curbside Pickup Milton" or "Curbside Pickup Oakville". Call or email us to place your order! We will confirm your order, help you select sizes, and let you know when your order is ready for pickup. Simply call when you arrive! We will accept payment over the phone, etransfer and debit tap in Milton (through our side window/drive thru!).
We understand that things will be different going forward. We will do our best to be prepared for you but we welcome your help and your suggestions. If you have any ideas or insight for us we would love to hear from you! Email Allison at [email protected] with your questions or suggestions.
We cannot do this alone and are asking for your cooperation. When we do re-open fully, please consider our restrictions as responsible actions taken for the benefit of your health and the health of others. We are asking for your kindness and continued support while we transition into this new normal. And we can't wait for the day when dancers can return to studios, competitions, recitals, auditions, conferences and camps safely!
Keep safe everyone.