Workplace safety is critical for a company to function as it should. Even with a robust safety program in place, the plan won’t work well unless everyone follows the rules. There are some important ways that employers can empower their workers to be more mindful of workplace safety.
- Continue to Train Employees
You most likely provided comprehensive safety training when your program was first implemented. Over time, however, it’s natural for people to get a bit lackadaisical, especially if there have been no safety concerns. In addition to training all new employees on safety protocol, t’s a good idea to set up a routine safety reminder class for current employees. Be sure to emphasize the risks that are most common to your business. OSHA safety regulations give guidance on what can happen if everyone doesn’t adhere to important instructions.
- Provide the Tools Needed
Another key element to a successful safety program is to provide the necessary tools to help workers stay safe. In the manufacturing plant or warehouse, that would include such things as safety glasses, earplugs, steel toe boots and helmets. When you provide these tools at either no cost to the employee or at discounted prices, your workers will know that you are committed to keeping them safe.
- Make Workplace Safety a Job Requirement
Safety rules must be followed with no exceptions. If a worker is caught without the proper safety attire, there should be consequences. Make sure to match the punishment with the crime, however. If someone forgets to wear safety glasses before they walk through the plant, a reminder is probably sufficient. If someone purposely decides not to wear a respirator when working with dangerous gases, serious action should be taken immediately.
- Post signs
Posting signs around the manufacturing plant and warehouse is a great idea. It will remind workers of the risks inherent in the job they perform each day and will provide instructions on the proper safety regulations. The signs can point out areas where helmets or safety glasses are necessary and where safety kits are located. Safety signs can also point out areas that must be avoided.
Safety signs aren’t just necessary in the plant, however. Office safety posters provide important guidance for office workers. Ergonomic posters remind employees of good posture as well as the proper height of chairs, tables and monitors to avoid back pain and eye strain.
- Reward Good Behavior
Don’t forget to reward workers who follow safety rules. Provide incentives for those who go above and beyond when doing such things as warning a coworker of a safety breach, identifying a hazard or offering a suggestion to prevent an injury.
- Encourage Continual Improvement
In every workplace, there is room to continually improve the safety system. Conduct brainstorm sessions with different groups to find ways to increase overall safety and awareness. The more involved your workers feel in the safety discussion, the better your workplace safety culture will become.
Workplace safety is the responsibility of each member of your work staff, but it is most successful when it is embraced from the top down.