Employers have the sole responsibility of ensuring that employees are safe as soon as they enter the workplace premises. Protocols need to be set out from the very first day of business to ensure risks are kept to a minimum and accidents are unlikely to occur. Employees have a legal right to be safe at work and should feel confident that they are free from as many risks as possible by carrying out the necessary procedures. Although some hazards cannot be eliminated, each preauction taken reduces the likelihood of disasters occurring.
Here are some vital health and safety tips for your workplace:
1. Appoint a professional
As an employer, it’s essential to hire an individual who is professionally trained in the health and safety sector to assist you when it comes to maintaining the wellbeing of your employees while at work. A health and safety consultant will act as a point of reference, should there be any queries as to how to make the workplace a safer environment. This will not only cover your back should any accidents ever occur but will also give you the peace of mind that you have someone to speak to if you require any further guidance.
2. Write out a health and safety policy
Writing out a health and safety policy acts as a guideline which your employees can then abide by when it comes to their wellbeing at work. You may not be aware, but it is the law to do so if your business has five or more employees. Once the policy is written out as a hard copy, place it in a location where it is most likely to be noticed. The policy should state each employee’s tasks within the business. With the assistance of the health and safety consultant, it shouldn’t be too difficult to write out, nor should it take up a great deal of time. Ensure the policy is reviewed on a regular basis, in case any part of it needs changing or updating.
3. Risk assessment
Risk assessments are a fundamental aspect of the health and safety procedures within any workplace. The assessment will entail carrying out a detailed examination of what may be a risk to employee safety and what needs to be done to reduce or eliminate the risk completely. There are five steps to a risk assessment; however, you should also aim to involve employees and ask what they believe needs to be included, so you have additional knowledge of what may have otherwise been overlooked. Your employees are ultimately your eyes and ears of where they feel safety is an issue.
- Here are five easy steps to be followed as part of the risk assessment process:
- Identify the hazards
- Work out who may be harmed and how
- Evaluate the risks and decide on the necessary precautions
- Record your findings and put solutions in place
- Review your assessment on a regular basis, should anything need updating
Once your risk assessment has been completed, it would be wise to carry out random safety checks each week, as well as asking your health and safety consultant to make scheduled visits to the premises, so your employees feel obliged to follow the precautions which have been set out.
All employees should have adequate training to conduct themselves safely in the workplace, without risking the lives of their colleagues and themselves. Employees should be well informed of the hazards and risks which may occur, as well as how to deal with them if they were ever in danger. Employing a professional in the field to conduct training sessions would be wise to ensure employees are being given the most accurate and relevant information for their job roles. Keep a note of any training sessions, so refreshers are booked at the appropriate times. Ensure that any new employees are informed of the health and safety regulations as soon as they join the company, including the relevant issues stated within training sessions.
5. Workplace facilities and equipment
Depending on the sector and industry of your business, there will be necessary facilities and equipment needed to be put into place for the health and wellbeing of your employees. Here are just a few examples:
Welfare facilities: All workplaces should have a toilet, hand basin, towels, soap, and a hand dryer. There must also be drinking water available as well as kitchen facilities or a rest area where employees can relax during their break and lunch times.
Health procedures: All workplaces should have the employee’s health as a priority, and there are specific laws which determine the minimum requirements to prevent long-term health conditions. Regardless of the industry of your business, the premise should have adequate lighting, ventilation, temperature control, heating, spacious workspaces, and clean, hygienic surroundings. However, industries such as manufacturing will need to pay even more attention to employee health and safety, as there are many more risks to take into consideration for both employees and visitors spending long periods of time in factories, such as the likes of faulty machinery, fires and explosions, asbestos and exposure to loud noises. https://www.plant-tours.com/ offer custom, proprietary headsets, and headphones which have been carefully designed for noise and comfort requirements. Not only do they offer crisp audio fidelity for delivering instructions or information during tour guides, but also sufficient hearing protection when exposed to moderate to maximum noise levels.
6. Evaluate your competitor’s methods
One of the best ways to keep updated on the most efficient health and safety methods for your industry would be to evaluate the health and safety methods of competitors in the same field. Doing so may give you an insight into other aspects which may have been missed out on your own risk assessments or policies. Extra methods may be as fundamental as taking out the relevant insurance to protect your business against financial claims, or as simple as using a ‘wet floor’ sign to alert employees of a spillage.