The average workplace may not be an obvious danger zone, but it can easily turn into one without proper maintenance and organization. It’s the duty of the employer to make sure that never happens. The employer must spare no effort and resources in making sure that the workers are not exposed to unnecessary risk and hazards.
Safety is not a one-time, “fire and forget” endeavor. It must consistently be worked on, as part of a business’ daily routine. It’s an open-ended goal that can only be achieved with the right preparation.
On safety as a team effort
Safety must be a priority for all the workers of the business. It should be a top-to-bottom affair involving everyone, otherwise, it’s not going to be effective. A single mistake by an uninformed worker can easily undo the most well-thought safety measure.
The management must be ready to take into consideration the concerns of the workforce when it comes to workplace safety. After all, they’re the ones that are most exposed to the working conditions.
On identifying hazards at the workplace
A diligent business owner must identify possible health and safety risks in the workplace and must be prepared to handle them. To reduce the chances of accidents and mishaps, the workplace must be properly maintained and organized. The workplace must also have clear and unobstructed access to emergency exits and equipment like first aid kits and extinguishers.
Fire and electrical risks, in particular, should be given special consideration, as these are the most damaging hazards in a modern workplace.
On procedures and reporting
The business must have procedures in place to handle with accidents and emergencies. Everyone must be informed and prepped to enact these plans when needed.
Accident and injury reporting is part of this measure. In some countries, employers are even legally ordered to do record-keeping. For example, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OHSA) requires that “employers with more than 10 employees are required to keep a record of serious work-related injuries and illnesses.”
On the wellness of the workforce
A physically and mentally unfit worker is generally more prone to causing accidents and mishaps at work. This is a business reality that the employer must acknowledge and must prepare for.
Prevention is better than cure, according to that age-old proverb. Monitoring the workers’ health with regular medical check-ups can go a long way in preventing more serious conditions from developing. To combat drug abuse in the workplace, a business can enact random substance screenings via methods like hair and THC test kits.
Safety should be the number one concern of any enterprise that wants to operate in the long run. A major accident like a fire can easily shut a business down. Small hazards, left ignored, can give way to more serious mishaps that can cost the business dearly.
The burden of safety must be shouldered by everyone in the business. It’s not enough that the management takes on all the responsibility. For safety to become paramount, it must be part and parcel of daily business life.