How to Create a Workplace Safety Program
Creating a safe workplace means making sure that everyone who works for you is all on the same page. Having a workplace safety program means that not only is everyone aware of which hazards exist in the workplace and knows how to safely manage them, it shows that you value your employees enough to make safety a key part of your company culture.
A safety program can go a long way in preventing workplace injuries. Not sure where to begin? Here’s how to get started creating one for your workplace.
Identify Workplace Safety Hazards
Every workplace is going to have unique needs when it comes to safety, so the first step toward implementing a workplace safety program is to identify exactly which hazards need to be addressed in your situation. For example, in an office, this might include things like eliminating trip hazards and ergonomic issues. On the other hand, someplace like a warehouse would have a lot more issues to worry about, like working safely with machinery, fall protection, safely handling hazardous materials, and hazards in loading areas.
Once you know which hazards need to be handled, what is the best way to go about it? Would it be possible to get rid of a hazard all together? Is there a less dangerous option or process that could be used instead? Does safety equipment need to be provided or could guards be installed to protect people from dangerous components of machinery? Could having a standard procedure in place help people work safer?
When you think about protocols, don’t forget to also think about how people should report safety issues that need to be addressed.
Training & Education
With specific hazards identified and protocols in mind, it’s time to make sure all employees are educated and trained on new procedures and protocols. As new employees are hired, this training and education needs to be part of the standard onboarding process. Even if a new employee has experience doing a similar type of work, they may be used to following different procedures that previous employers used.
Implement & Evaluate
Very often, safety programs aren’t perfect right off the bat so it’s important to make sure things are working as they should. It takes time for people to get used to a new process, so it’s important to keep an eye on employees as they adjust. As you observe people at work, you may need to remind them of safety procedures or policies. You might also notice that some policies or procedures aren’t working out as intended and changes need to be made to improve them.
Accept Feedback & Adapt
As part of the evaluation process, be sure to include feedback from employees. After all, they need to follow these protocols on a daily basis and would have a lot of first-hand perspective on what is working, what isn’t, and what could be done more effectively. In addition to your own observations, employee feedback should be considered as part of the evaluation process. Taking both your perspective and their perspective into account can help improve the program.
Contact a Workplace Accident Lawyer
When injuries in the workplace occur, it’s often because of inadequate safety protocols or accident prevention measures. If you or a loved one has been injured on the job, don’t hesitate to contact a workplace injury lawyer as soon as possible. When you call Goodwin & Sciezka, you’ll be able to talk to a lawyer experienced in helping the victims of workplace accidents in the state of Michigan. Contact us today to get started.
Image: iStock / AzmanL