On the Job Safety: 7 Ways to Make Sure Your Employees Are Safe

When it comes to staying safe at work, all employees must take responsibility. As a manager or supervisor, you need to model correct safety behavior for your employees. Leaders should exemplify safety in their actions to create an overall culture focused on safety. Make safety a priority at your workplace by implementing proper safety protocols from the start. Not sure where to begin? Here are 6 tips to make sure your employees are safe on the job. 

1. Provide Relevant Training

Before employees begin work, they will be trained at their particular role. No matter if this is working in a potentially hazardous area or at a desk, employees should learn the importance of staying safe. They should be provided with general safety protocols, ergonomic safety and job- or equipment-specific training. Training should be updated and reviewed frequently, and training resources should always be available for review. Overall, high-quality training is the best way to prevent workplace injuries. 

2. Establish Open Communication

To create a safety culture at work, there must be open lines of communication between employees and their supervisors. Safety should be discussed often and employees should feel comfortable expressing their concerns. Notably, all employees need to report an injury or hazard to the proper person as soon as possible. As a leader, make it easy for your employees to approach you with health or safety concerns: no matter how small an injury or potential hazard may seem, show concern and take appropriate action.

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3. Eliminate Workplace Hazards

To keep the jobsite safe, take time to eliminate any hazards. Some unsafe conditions may be obvious and easy to remove (think water spilled in the hallway). Others will require the help of a skilled supervisor or repair person. As a leader, be sure your workplace is free from physical and chemical hazards and in compliance with the standards, rules and regulations of the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA). If you spend most of your day at a desk, take time to declutter. Not only may a clean desk help increase your work efficiency, but a clear space can also help keep you and your coworkers safe from hidden hazards: look at clearing out tangled cords, messy floors or stacks of boxes.

4. Know How to Respond

Unfortunately, accidents and emergencies are bound to happen on the job. Be certain that your employees know how to respond! Make first aid kits accessible to employees to treat injuries. Choose the type of kit that best fits your jobsite: a basic kit will likely work for an office, while a trauma kit might be better suited for more hazardous jobs. Show employees the location of emergency exits and keep the pathways to those exits clear at all times. Schedule regular drills or trainings to ensure your employees are ready for anything. 

5. Take Regular Breaks

Many workplace injuries occur when employees become tired or overwhelmed with their job. While specific break laws vary by state, OSHA requires all employers to offer designated break times to their employees. Encourage workers to take time during their breaks to decompress, relax a moment, or even stretch. Stretch breaks can improve ergonomics and overall health; just a few minutes of stretching can ease muscle tension, loosen your joints and provide an energy boost. 

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6. Make Safety Fun!

The topic of safety isn’t the most fun thing to bring up in meetings or work gatherings. However, it doesn’t have to be humdrum all the time! When hosting a meeting or training, keep things fun and light while still communicating the importance of the material. Create a safety committee that helps build camaraderie. Consider implementing a system that rewards employees for being safe. If nothing else, provide praise to employees for a job well-done: recognize outstanding employees or departments in company meetings or through an email chain. 

Safety: A Top Priority on the Job

Job safety should be a top priority for all employers. Make sure that your employees are well trained before starting the job. While working, be sure employees stay alert and aware of their surroundings. Any hazards or unsafe conditions should be reported ASAP; all employees should feel comfortable reporting concerns to their supervisor. With the right steps and attitudes about safety, you can keep your employees safe while also getting the job done. 

 

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