As Trump lowers visibility on safety fines in the workplace, it is now even more important for bosses to take care of their employee’s welfare. With that in mind, the post below will cover some of the basics concerning safety in the workplace. Something all bosses need to have a good grasp on to keep both their business and their employee as safe and healthy as possible.
Your location, your problem.
Generally, as a rule, if an accident happens on your site, shop, office or any other location than it is usually your problem. It is your problem because it is your responsibility to ensure that the environment is safe for workers.
What this means is that regular checks need to be carried out on physical locations, as well as the equipment in those areas to ensure that they are working correctly and safely.
Things to look out for include frayed electric cables, dust pollution that is not being dealt with by wearing masks and uneven walking surfaces that may be tripping hazards. The everyday comfort of workers when performing their tasks is also important to keep an eye on, as some health risk work over the long term and are not immediately noticeable.
Working at height can be a source of significant issues where health and safety are concerned. In fact, many people will now refuse even to use a ladder in the line of work if they have not first been on a training course for it.
With this in mind, the provision of the correct safety equipment such as harness, belays, and callipers, as well as the proper training to use them is essential.
Training is key.
Training is probably the most effective way to reduce the risk of injury in the workplace. Of course, to have the best impact such training needs to be matched to the tasks that employees are doing on a regular basis.
That means for those working in an office environment training on how to set up their desk, and keyboard, and monitor, as well as how to lift things with their legs and when to ask for help when carrying is the best choice.
Alternatively, for those working on a building site, safety courses will be much more tailored to safely operating the equipment and utilities they use as part of their day, as well as safe navigation of their location.
Of course, other types of work environment such as medical ones will be more focused on issues of contamination and contagion, and as such will be concerned with protective clothing and hygiene practices over the other provisions mentioned above. Something that means it’s vital to be aware of the standards and rules in your particular field that relate to safe working practices.
Heavy industry and construction are the most dangerous.
Unsurprisingly those bosses working in the heavy industry and construction sectors often have the most prominent burden to bear regarding safety risk in the workplace. This is usually because of the potential seriousness of an accident that can occur in this line of work.
However, just because there is a higher risk of injury and even death for employees in such a field, it doesn’t mean that this need to be the reality of the situation. In fact, by putting in the correct measures and following the standards outlined by your field, you can run a safe site where employee well being is preserved. You can check out these mining infrastructure projects for some examples of how to do this well, as such companies know the importance of sticking to the sector guidelines, even in some of the most challenging and complex locations. Something that demonstrates it is possible for your business to do this too.
Promote a culture of reporting.
No one like to think of themselves as a tattletale or a whistleblower, however reporting in health and safety is a vital factor. Reporting is so crucial because it is employees that are most likely to notice a faulty piece of machinery or an unsafe location and for something to be done about this its need to be reported to the supervisor so action can be taken.
Of course, for this reporting to take place workers need to feel comfortable pointing out safety risks. You can encourage this situation as an employer by providing a variety of way to report any issues of safety including by digital media and in an anonymised way if necessary, as some workers may be scared to lose their jobs if they criticise the company openly.
Although, in the long term it’s also important that you foster a culture of trust that allows workers to report things without concern for their employment status and make the environment safer at the same time.
First aid training.
It is also is vital that as a boss you ensure that there are enough trained first-aiders on your workforce that are equipped to handle the types of situation that may occur.
The benefits of workplace safety.
Lastly, don’t forget that apart from the ethical advantage of knowing that you employee are as safe as possible in their work environment, there are other benefits of promoting safety at work too.
These include improvements in morale, as folk that feel cared for are much more likely to work hard than those that don’t feel that way. Also, employment lawsuits are pretty standard these days, and having to pay out a large settlement can severely damage your businesses viability in the long term. Therefore bosses should minimise the risk of getting into this situation in the first place and take care of workplace safety today!