By Alice Porter
Safe work practices should be at the forefront of any good business owner’s priority list. Whatever sector you specialise in, whether you have an office space, a restaurant, a bar or an industrial site, there are certain codes and conducts that you must follow to ensure a safer work environment. If you fail to keep up with these safe work practices, it could have negative ramifications for your employees and for your business. Here are five of the most important steps to ensure a safer work place…
Imagine this, your company is doing well, you’re getting busier and you need more people to help you on your road to success. There’s nothing more tempting than making a quick hire to make sure that you are getting the help that you need. This is one of the biggest mistakes that any employer can make, although it pays off on the odd occasion, most of the time this ends in disaster. The hiring process can be quite frustrating and time consuming, but you have to get it right. If you’re looking to build upon and expand your team, then it’s important to make sure that you’re bringing in the right kind of person. Only welcome somebody through the door if they are going to add value to your business and essentially make it a success.
It’s important to always conduct a level of psychometric testing in the hiring process, find out a person’s wants, needs and goals to make sure that they share the same vision as you. You need to be confident that you are hiring somebody who is of sound mind and body, who will respect your safe work practices and who will put in maximum effort with your business.
Demand Safe Work Practices:
Safe work practices are essentially the dos and don’ts of a business, and the specific procedures that must be followed. For example: “do wear a hat/ hairnet when handling food”, “don’t run with a sharp knife”, “do wear a hard hat in a building site”, “don’t operate any vehicles if you aren’t licensed to do so.” These regulations must be well documented and easily accessed for all of your employees – this way they will always have a point of reference for training purposes, and if anything goes wrong, there will be evidence of a structure in place.
Train Your Staff:
Health and safety regulation training sessions need to be ingrained into every fibre of your company. This will allow you to see the strengths and weaknesses of your business and help you to improve upon them. Whether you are a restaurant proprietor, training your staff on how to clean a grill, or on COSHH (care of chemicals hazardous to health); or an employer who needs to conduct risk assessments or training exercises for building sites, training processes must be vigorous and frequent. Some of the most successful businesses regularly conduct training exercises to ensure that they are one step ahead of the competition and completely on top of their game.
Create a Safe Work Space:
It’s all well and good preaching about safe work practices and putting in the training, but if your business environment is not safe, then all of your efforts will be wasted. Making a workplace safer can be as simple as covering up and exposed wires in an office space, fixing any uneven floorboards or putting signs up for low hanging beams. One of the most overlooked, yet vital aspects that a business owner must consider is indoor air quality in a workspace. Recent studies have revealed that poor indoor air quality can be more detrimental to a person’s health than poor outdoor air quality. Because of this, it is imperative as a business owner to make sure that you have the correct ventilation systems to supply fresh and clean air into any given workspace.
Provide Equipment and Tools:
If you’re working on a building site or in a restaurant, then providing the correct personal protective equipment and the correct tools is extremely important. For example, providing protective head gear, eye wear, face masks and gloves, can help to protect your employees from cuts, burns and ailments. Covering every possible avenue could prevent injury, ongoing health problems and damage. These steps will ensure a more successful and safe working environment, and if you choose to ignore these simple, yet vital factors, then your business and your employees will eventually pay the price.