Whether your workplace environment is a factory floor or floors of office cubicles, workplace safety training has a place in the development of all employees.
Ignoring safety concerns and training for your employees can have a huge cost to your business. Some estimates cite one billion dollars a week in payments caused by workplace injuries. This doesn’t even speak to the costs due to lost business and damage to its reputation and brand.
PACE Staffing Network offers these seven questions for workplace safety managers and supervisors to ask themselves as they plan safety training for their employees:
1. Are your signs and posters regarding workplace safety up-to-date?
Verify that internal signage at all sites is in the language that your workers understand, with visual cues and graphics that are clear and understandable.
2. Are all workers up-to-date with training?
Periodically, your human resources or organizational development personnel should review employee records to check that all hires – new and old – have had training for their current job responsibilities. This is especially important, as job tasks do tend to change over time. Also, it is an opportunity to make sure that as new hires come on board, they are offered the same required training that has been provided to existing staff.
3. Has new equipment or processes been put into place since the last workplace safety meeting? Are new equipment installations planned in the near future?
Your operations and floor staff will probably have a handle on these questions, but at a managerial and leadership level, the answers to these questions are something you will want to verify.
4. Are employees encouraged – or rewarded – to speak up about safety issues that they see or can anticipate?
There is no easy way to describe the culture of an organization, but at all levels, fostering an awareness of safety and acknowledging areas of improvement goes a long way towards making employees be comfortable in bringing up safety issues with management. You can only take care of the problems that you know about, and employees are your best sources to find those problems.
5. Do employees have easy access to training materials for equipment – in print, or other visual aids?
This goes along with the first tip about signage. Training material should be easily accessible. Consider that perhaps you have employees working on a second or third shift; if all training materials are stored in the human resource manager’s office, and that is only open on a first shift, you have a problem of access!
6. When was the last time an outside observer did a walk-through of your organization?
For staff who see the same environment each day, safety issues that are fixable might not be something that gets their attention. Consider bringing in someone who is not connected to your company to provide an honest, thorough and thoughtful evaluation of your workplace safety – the good and the not so good.
7. Are employees aware of recent safety inspections?
This final item goes back to a basic communication issue: keep your employees aware of your safety inspections and your record, and encourage them to take ownership of their workplace safety. Keeping your employees injury-free goes a long way towards high morale at your business.
PACE Staffing Network has counseled workplace safety training teams in a variety of settings on the best ways to engage employees and to keep their training up-to-date. Contact us today to find out what we can offer your workplace safety team.