Protecting Your Business From Employee Accidents
If you are in charge of a workplace, a single accident can have a huge impact on your business. As the owner, you can become responsible for workers’ compensation paperwork and medical bills. It can also take a toll on your other employees, leading to low morale and loss of productivity.
Accident prevention is important for avoiding these headaches, but also for creating a workplace environment where employees feel safe and comfortable. No one wants to come to work afraid that there is a large risk of getting hurt, so taking the proper safety precautions will benefit your employees, customers, and you. Here are some ways that you can protect your business from employee accidents.
Express the Importance of Training
Health and safety training is important, but so is the training for performing jobs themselves. Your staff should understand the importance of knowing how to complete a task, operate machinery, or use certain equipment before ever starting a job.
No employee should be taking on a task they do not have experience doing without the proper training and instruction. When employees perform a job that they are not knowledgeable about, it can increase the risk of injury and accidents tremendously. The first thing you need to express to your staff is the importance of never working on a task that they have not been trained to do.
Provide Safety Training Regularly
Every new employee should undergo the required safety training before starting their work. However, even employees who have been doing a particular job for a while can benefit from a refresher. Individuals can get comfortable doing the same job they have always done, which can lead to carelessness or forgetting some of the necessary safety measures.
It is important to make safety training regularly required for all of your employees so that the knowledge is constantly fresh within their minds. Safety regulations can also change, so you need to make sure everyone is up to date with the latest information.
Prioritize Mental Health
A lot of accidents come from employees who are overworked, exhausted, stressed, or dealing with a mental health condition. Depending on your line of work, you may need to be cognizant of the mental toll that the workplace could be having on your employees. Maintaining a non-toxic environment and being conscious of anyone who is being overworked is important.
When people are stressed they can become unfocused and less productive, so it is helpful to ensure that your workplace environment is not the cause of any increased stress or anxiety. A common side effect of many mental health conditions is insomnia, and when people do not get enough sleep they also become more prone to accidents.
You want to send a clear message to your employees that mental health is a priority for you as the boss, and that they should take maintaining theirs seriously as well. When employees feel like their emotional needs are being taken care of within the workplace, they are much less likely to become careless. You also do not want your employees to continue walking around with untreated conditions, so make sure they know that you are supporting them.
Hire Enough Workers
Having less employees than you need puts extra work and stress onto your existing employees which can lead to burnout. Likewise, when people are rushing to finish more tasks than they have time for they can become even more accident-prone. You want your employees to have enough energy to be productive during their jobs, and giving one person the work of two people will make them less productive and more inclined to make mistakes. Mistakes can be simple, but they can also create an enormous safety risk.
Hire Qualified Workers
Hiring qualified people to work for your business will ensure that the jobs are completed properly, and it will also help decrease the risk of accidents. When you hire people who have little experience, training, or education, it may take them longer to understand the job and as a result less likely to understand the necessary safety procedures.
Individuals who have experience in a job also have experience applying safety measures within the workplace and have probably already undergone some safety training. This will make it easier for them to adapt to the specifics of your business as well as any changes in procedures.
Create Open Communication
You want your employees to feel comfortable working at your business, and if they do not feel safe coming to you with any problems or concerns, it will increase the likelihood of safety risks going unnoticed. Creating an environment where employees know that there is open communication between them and the bosses will decrease the risk of any accidents in the long run.
Roni Davis is a writer, blogger, and legal assistant operating out of the greater Philadelphia area. She writes for a workers’ compensation lawyer in Mount Laurel.