Every business needs to have a plan in place for workplace safety. But what should it cover? Whether it is delivered in person or through online health and safety courses, the training should include at least these ten essentials.
1. Identify, Analyze and Control Hazards.
Check the surroundings where your workers do their job and the equipment they use. In this all-important step, the actual heart of your safety plan, you identify what can go wrong and what can harm workers. Then you come up with procedures that proactively prevent trouble from happening. This can involve the process of eliminating or substituting in order to remove or neutralize the danger, re-tooling to make the work safer, using personal safety gear, and making management decisions through the filter of safety first.
2. Design the Workplace with Safety in Mind.
A safe workplace is almost always an efficient one, giving management a double reason to make the environment one that protects the workers. Building codes are the first line of safety. Regulations for electrical wiring and fire suppression are part of all municipal construction codes. Management can add safety features like noise reduction, good ventilation, and ergonomically designed furniture.
3. Evaluate the Safest Way to do the Job.
Workers need to know what is the best way to get the job done and stay safe at the same time. Management needs to develop the best system for each job and educate the workers to use them.
4. Comply with all Agency Safety Regulations.
This can be OSHA, the Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Transportation or state and local boards. Each business should have a method of keeping on top of new requirements.
5. Handle Medical Care.
This covers a wide range of situations, including screening job applicants if special health requirements are necessary for the job, identifying what to do if someone gets injured and making first aid kits easy to find.
6. Monitor your Plan and Modify it when Required.
You need to keep analyzing what is working and what isn’t. Without this, good procedures go by the wayside because people decide they aren’t necessary or take too much time. Constant monitoring helps avoid accidents and injuries.
7. Involve the Workers.
Since they are in the trenches, actually using the tools and performing the actions that might lead to injury, your workers are your best resource. They know what works and what doesn’t. Your business needs an open door for feedback.
8. Train and Communicate.
The best in-person or online health and safety course is no good if you don’t train the workers in the proper procedures. As they require changes, you will need an effective system of communication to keep workers updated.
9. Do the Essential Administrative Work.
Write up accurate job descriptions so the right worker is matched correctly to the right job. Assigning specific employees to specialize in keeping the plan up to date.
10. Audit the Plan.
Measure how well the plan is working at regular intervals. Assess what works and what needs modification. Figure out if you are staying on top of compliance rules in a timely manner.
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