A good safety program is vital to a company's success
As an employer, it is your legal responsibility to ensure your members of staff are receiving the correct workplace health and safety training, as well as a health and safety management system, a safety program, and that you focus on improving your overall working environment.
The goal of a safety program is to protect your workers from actual hazards and any significant risks, as well as to comply with all health and safety regulations. Creating an effective safety program for your company requires these key elements:
A hazard assessment process
Having a hazard assessment process can help to avoid and control risks. Your safety program should include:
- A reliable procedure that allows employees to report any possible hazardous conditions without fear and to receive appropriate and timely responses.
- An annual comprehensive health and safety program that’s regularly viewed by people who are qualified to recognize existing hazards and risks. This can be done by in-house staff members, or a third-party safety professional.
- Ongoing monitoring and maintenance of all furniture and equipment — and fixing broken elements such as castor wheels, which you can buy from places such as Tente or supporting legs — to prevent them becoming a hazard.
- Investigations accidents, near misses, injury, and illness to identify causes and corrective actions.
Rules and work procedures
You must have a safety plan in place with rules for specific operations within your company. They must be understood by all supervisors and employees and should include enforcement such as disciplinary action, for those who don’t follow the rules. You should also establish procedures for emergencies that will require protective personal equipment such as first aid, medical care, or evacuations. You must also provide the emergency numbers to call, exit routes, and correct training for staff members.
Safety training and education
A key element of effective safety management is establishing a training program for all employees. Workers who are educated about their environment and how to manage themselves safely are more productive and less likely to be injured.
All employees must understand the different hazards associated with their job, their potential effect on other workers, and their own role when it comes making sure everyone follows the rules, procedures, and practices for controlling exposure to hazards.
All companies should invest in recurring training that is specific to the hazards recognized in audits and inspections, as well as tasks that employees are expected to perform.
Safety training should include:
- Hazard recognition and communication
- Company safety protocols
- Acceptable and restricted behaviors
- Proper PPE
- Control measures
- Job-specific training
Always consider the level of risk because the higher the risk, the more frequent and detailed your monitoring needs to be. Your obligations to monitor your work will depend on circumstances and need.
Other times when monitoring may be necessary:
- To ensure that all risks have been covered by a new risk assessment that has been carried out due to a change in process, for example the installation of new workstation.
- When an investigation takes place following an incident.
The only way you can be sure if your workers are carrying out their safety obligations is to carry out adequate supervision.
The level of supervision your workplace requires will increase if the level of safety control put in place to reduce risk is low. For example, the less effective the control, the higher the level of supervision necessary.
With these five efficient, safety procedures in place your team should be happy and healthy every day at work.
Written by: Jessica Foreman, BOSS Contributor