Occupational health and safety concerns are overwhelming for new employers and make some of the common, most costly, and most dangerous violations in the workplace. Even in office environments, there are a plethora of safety laws that employers must implement to protect employees or risk being liable. In all environments, but especially in settings dealing with chemicals, heavy equipment, and physical exertion and repetition, the highest standards should be upheld. Always Follow guidelines from OSHA and federal, state, and local laws. The following is an overview for all of you Human Resources, Risk Management, and Safety professionals to make sure you are doing all you can to protect your employees.
Workplace risks often result from employer neglect including improper training or oversight and may result in personal injury and death – tragic enough in itself while resulting in lawsuit and business closure often by order.
Avoid this outcome by implementing appropriate safety practices. Employees are automatically set up for failure if the environment is not safe for operation. Staff should be trained to operate machinery and use materials properly, and communicate concerns and problems.
A safe environment and proper training minimize employee responsibility in workplace incidents but the risk doesn’t stop there. Employees should wear appropriate clothing and practice safety awareness while on task, and managers should be on hand for monitoring and expediently making necessary adjustments.
Employee training is imperative and may require outside consultants and independently contracted trainers. Upon hiring and training of employees, clear instruction and information must be provided regarding procedures, clothing requirements, and other relevant applications. Proper management of employees and regular maintenance of machinery as well as monitoring of the environment are essential.
Never leave your company or employees exposed to unnecessary risk from an unsafe work environment. Follow and implement all safety laws, practice safety awareness, and train your workforce to do the same.