No business can hope to thrive if its employees don’t feel safe while doing their work. Taking visible and effective steps to protect workers will limit downtime, heighten productivity, and create a generalised feeling of goodwill that’ll permeate your entire culture. Fail to take these steps, on the other hand, and you risk losing your employees to rival firms who’ll prioritise their welfare.
So, what’s the right way to keep employees safe? Let’s take a look at a few steps worth taking.
Ensure you have a health and safety officer
If there’s no one person in charge of Health and Safety, then it’s unlikely that anyone will take the initiative themselves. Smaller companies may be able to appoint an existing member of staff as Health and Safety Officer without adding significantly to the workload. In the case of larger organisations, or those where the risks are higher, then bringing a full-time member of staff on board might be worthwhile, instead.
Employees must adhere to all health and safety regulations
If health and safety measures aren’t adhered to, then they won’t be effective. It’s the job of the health and safety officer, and the firm as a whole, to spread the message. The first step toward doing this is to create a health and safety policy, and to circulate it within your workforce. The document needn’t be an especially long or involved one; it simply needs to outline what tasks need to be completed, when they need to be completed, and who’s responsible.
Conduct risk assessments
The sources of risk in any business can vary significantly. It’s important that you take the time to make yourself aware of where the threats lie. Do this through regular, formal risk assessments. Having identified the risks, you can then formally implement measures to control them. Get into the habit of doing risk assessments regularly, and they’ll be inexpensive and quick. Employees which fail to take this entirely reasonable step might find themselves vulnerable to claims of medical negligence, should an injury occur.
The equipment you use can be a potential hazard, especially if it’s poorly maintained. This is especially so in certain industrial and construction settings. Schedule regular inspections, and make sure that there’s a paper trail so that responsibility can be traced.
Employees who receive training in health and safety will be better equipped to identify and guard against risks, and be more confident in reporting systemic failings. An informed workforce can be a powerful asset in the fight for workplace safety – make sure that you take full advantage!