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Apple making safety changes to supply chain amid coronavirus

Apple is making key safety changes to its supply chain amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The tech giant is working closely with its global supply chain to bring in important safety measures to protect workers during the global health crisis, as outlined in the company's new 2020 Supplier Responsibility report.

Sabih Khan, Apple's senior vice president of operations and the person in charge of the company's global supply chain, detailed the changes in a letter at the beginning of the report.

He said: "[Apple is working with suppliers] on a range of protections suited to the circumstances in each country, including health screenings, limiting density, and ensuring strict adherence to social distancing in their facilities."

Sabih also claimed Apple is now requiring the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) during work and "in all common areas", and said the company has worked with its supply chain partners to implement "enhanced deep cleaning protocols" and make masks and sanitisers available to workers.

Apple has also worked with suppliers to change factory floor plans and implemented flexible working hours and staggered work shifts to allow workers to "maximise interpersonal space".

Sabih said: "From the outset, we worked with our suppliers to develop and execute a plan that puts the health of people first. Thousands of Apple employees have worked tirelessly to execute that plan in partnership with our suppliers around the world."

The news comes one month after Apple CEO Tim Cook reportedly told employees the company would likely be implementing temperature checks and social distancing when its staff return to the company's offices.

And staff members in Apple's retail stores - some of which could reopen in the US later this week - will also be required to take temperature tests and wear masks.

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