Regardless of the size or type, it is paramount for every business to ensure workplace safety for its employees.
The Occupational Safety Health Administration (OSHA) is a regulatory authority that establishes certain standards and regulations all employers must follow regarding workplace safety.
All businesses are accountable by law to report severe injuries or illnesses in the workplace to the agency.
Implementing a comprehensive safety program would minimize the risk of injuries and diseases, reducing employee absenteeism and turnover and the health care costs associated with it.
Going above and beyond to promote safety in the workplace protects employee health and wellbeing while saving businesses from paying hefty costs in compensation cases, positively impacting their bottom line.
Accordingly, the article will put forth some viable tips for proactively encouraging a safe and healthy environment within the workplace.
Let us dive in!
8 Tips For Improving Workplace Safety
1. Train Your Employees
Extensive training is an indispensable aspect of creating a strong safety culture in the workplace.
Training your employees about safety precautions extends far beyond simply handing out a few safety manuals and expecting your job to be done.
Provide your workers with adequate training for their roles for an efficient and accident-free workplace.
Regularly scheduling comprehensive training programs will reinforce the importance of complying with strict safety protocols and ensure that each employee is well-aware of the precautions to take to prevent an injury and how to respond to a potential accident.
2. Practice Cleanliness Religiously
Perform regular inspections to check for potential hazards and encourage your employees to practice a clean work routine.
It is a fact that messy or cluttered workplaces can lead to injuries, such as slipping or tripping while working. However, you can avoid this by keeping the workplace clean, tidy, and organized.
From stacking boxes safely to keeping corridors and exits free from objects, keeping things orderly and stored in their assigned places will result in a neat-looking workplace while preventing unwanted incidents.
It is also essential to keep everything sanitized and free of germs. Ensure to spray a disinfectant on tables, chairs, keyboards, and other high-traffic objects.
Mount a hand sanitizer in every corner of the room so that the workers can easily access it whenever required. Encourage washing hands with soap and water.
3. Encourage Frequent Breaks
Perhaps the most basic step you can take to enhance workplace safety is to allow workers to take regular breaks away from their work.
Walking around or stretching for as little as five minutes every thirty minutes can promote better health by keeping the blood flowing and reducing work-related stress.
Prolonged sitting and increased stress levels can increase hypertension in employees. Therefore, instead of encouraging non-stop work, ask your employees to take frequent small breaks during their shift, besides the official lunch break.
Regular movement breaks will reduce blood pressure levels and prevent musculoskeletal disorders while making workers feel relaxed, refreshed, and more productive.
A blood pressure monitor can help keep blood glucose levels in check and identify hypertensive workers early, ensuring timely medical care.
4. Use Signs and Labels
Placing warning sign boards or labels throughout the workplace is a cost-effective way to convey vital information, such as warning about potential hazards. These labels and sign boards should be big and bold enough for the workers to read them easily from afar.
From cautioning workers to wear high visibility clothing or hard hats in a particular area to watching for forklifts nearby, signs and labels effectively deliver necessary information and are great visual safety reminders for all people present in the workplace.
5. Reward Employees for Practicing Safe Behavior
Celebrate your employees who commit to practicing safe behavior throughout the month. Reinforce positive behaviors by rewarding workers for following the company’s safety guidelines and meeting the safety milestones each month.
Incentives like extra time off, gift card prizes or longer breaks can help keep employees engaged in following health and safety guidelines set by the company.
Rewarding your employees for following established safety protocols will encourage them to adhere to them in the future, thus leading to a decrease in work-related accidents or injuries.
6. Partner with Occupational Clinicians
Consulting occupational health experts can offer valuable insights into preventing accidents and maintaining top-notch safety in the workplace. Professionals can help enhance workplace safety by visiting your facility and identifying areas at a high risk of a potential accident.
They can also help elevate your workplace ergonomics, reducing pain and discomfort and the risk of developing musculoskeletal disorders.
7. Use the Right Tools and Equipment
Ensuring workers have the right tools and equipment to perform their work is an indispensable aspect of keeping employees safe and healthy in your workplace.
Machine or equipment malfunctions or breakdowns are amongst the most dangerous hazards in a workplace. Injuries due to defective machinery or equipment can be severe and often fatal.
Make sure that everything is in working order and is performing without any hiccups. Schedule regular equipment inspections and cleaning for optimal performance and mitigate risks associated with a faulty machine.
8. Keep Open Lines of Communication
Encourage your staff to point out any health and safety concerns they might have.
Maintain an open-door policy whereby employees can comfortably report any potential hazards they notice without hindrance.
Conduct regular meetings with your employees and ask them for their suggestions on further improving safety in the workplace. That can generate new and creative ideas and boost employee morale by making them feel their advice is valued by the company’s top brass.
As a business owner and employer, you are responsible by law to create a safe and secure working environment for your employees. The best way to stay on top of the safety program is to constantly think and implement new ideas to improve the organization’s safety culture.
Whether it is an office, a warehouse, or a construction site, creating and maintaining a safe workplace will minimize the risk of injuries and result in higher levels of employee satisfaction and well-being, ultimately enhancing overall productivity and revenues.