At Integrity Staffing, we have comprehensive safety policies and procedures in place to protect both our workers and clients from harm to people and property (and insurance rates). It's so important to us that we even offer all potential clients a free safety consultation by our OSHA-certified experts!
But simply passing out a handbook is not enough. Employees must be encouraged and enabled to identify risky behaviors and make smart safety decisions every day. Here are our experts' top tips for creating a safe work environment.
Wear the safety gear. Every single time.
There should be no exceptions, even for a task that will only take 5 seconds. That's long enough to have an accident.
No shortcuts with the machinery.
Built-in safeguards on tools and equipment may give you a sense of security — but they only work if employees are using them correctly.
Promote constant awareness.
Just as they teach you in driving school, workers should keep a watch on the activities and obstacles around them.
Install health and safety signs.
These reminders could be anything from the safe way to lift heavy loads to washing hands before leaving the restroom.
Disseminate the procedure for accidents.
Where is the first aid kit? How do you use it? Who do you call? Employees should know these things BEFORE they're in the middle of an emergency.
Don't block the emergency exits.
Should be a no-brainer, but it does happen. Same goes for access to equipment shut-offs.
Manage stress levels.
Stress, exhaustion and burnout are among the most common causes of workplace safety incidents. Regular breaks are necessary to recharge workers' mental and physical energy.
No getting high.
Alcohol and drugs decrease alertness, judgment, coordination and control — a perfect recipe for disaster.
Establish a safe procedure for reporting unsafe conditions.
Employees should have a channel for informing management of potential risks, without being labeled a slacker or complainer.
Hold regular inspections.
Walk the entire building to see what may have fallen below standard or what safety improvements (such as non-slip floor mats) might be advisable.
We believe that workplace safety involves more than the physical environment; it's a state of mind that every employee should share. When businesses get that right, both safety and productivity are improved.