No matter what size your business is, safety needs to be a priority. Workplace safety isn’t just about being up to code or working correctly, it’s also about making sure that every member of your team is safe and working in a way that doesn’t interrupt businesses processes. Business waste in manufacturing and factory environments is a big problem for many. As a business leader, be up-to-date on all aspects of safety and health codes, as well as the implementation of tools and programs.
Where to Start
First and foremost, it’s important to develop a comprehensive workplace safety program. This, of course, will be designed to meet state laws and the specific needs of your industry and employees. There are so many details to attend to that you may need help with making a plan. A safety inspector might tell you to change a few simple things like adding stainless steel extended valves to equipment or moving a cabinet because it’s in the way of major traffic flow. Remember to be flexible and listen to the experts, so your business runs as safely and efficiently as possible.
Assess Current Risks
It’s important to first assess the current risks and hazards in the workplace and learn where you can tighten things up. Safety inspectors and safety companies can help with the initial assessment if you don’t know what to look for. Read up on current safety laws for your industry, so you can eliminate any immediate dangers or violations.
Have Company Policies and Protocols In Place
Once you understand where risk is, make your safety policies company-wide. Everyone should be trained thoroughly in these policies from the beginning of their employment. If you develop new policies and protocols, existing employees will need to go through additional training. You and your management team should be able to do simple training but may need help with more complex programs. I also recommend adding a safety incentive program that gives employees an added reason to be extra careful and avoid mistakes and violations.
Display Signage Detailing Safety Practices and Warnings
Your employees should have constant access to the safety rules and protocols. Display signs and complete program outline somewhere easy to see and read. If you are writing new training and safety policies, make sure everyone is aware that things will be changing. Your business relies on being open and honest, and it starts with transparency in your safety policies.
Offer Ongoing Training
It’s not enough to offer a one-time training class on safety. People forget things that aren’t in front of them daily. Emphasizing employee education and ongoing training is important for consistency and compliance of your safety program. Safety training should be done annually at minimum, depending on your industry and safety risk factors.
Appoint Safety Leaders
Lastly, appoint at least two people to track and monitor your business for safety compliance. If accidents happen, someone will also need to know how to handle things like reports, getting medical care, and making sure the safety of others. These leaders could be managers, supervisors, or just employees you trust to be accurate and fair.