You may have state of the art PPE.
Your disinfecting protocols may be second to none.
Your safety policies may follow OSHA’s latest requirements.
But none of this will protect your employees or organization unless everyone complies consistently.
Creating a safe work environment is a business imperative:
- It helps prevent accidents, injuries and illnesses.
- It helps protect you from costly workers’ compensation claims.
- It protects your reputation in your industry.
- It improves morale, productivity and profitability.
- It builds your employment brand, enhancing both recruiting and retention.
If you’re looking for proven ways to reinforce the safety measures you’ve painstakingly created, here’s how to drive safety compliance in your organization:
- Create formal policies.
If you haven’t already, document your policies and procedures in writing and add them to your employee handbook. Then, require all employees to read and acknowledge their understanding and willingness to comply.
- Properly train employees.
Employees can’t comply with safety requirements unless they fully understand them. Develop a robust training program to bridge the gap between policy and practice. Since people learn best in different ways, provide a balance of training methods, such as group instruction, hands-on training and one-on-one learning. As you build your training program, evaluate which training methods prove the most engaging and effective – and adjust your efforts accordingly.
- Implement a buddy system for new hires.
After conducting initial safety training, assign the new employee a “safety buddy” – an experienced, safety-conscious employee who is a good communicator and role model. Have the buddy work alongside the new employee during their ramp up, reinforcing safety essentials in your workplace. While a safety buddy should not replace a supervisor or manager, they can be a resource to answer the new employee’s safety questions and help ensure proper procedures are followed.
- Hold periodic retraining.
Over time, employees may become lackadaisical or simply forget safety procedures. In addition, safety best practices and workplace hazards are continually evolving. Keep everyone vigilant, safe and up to date by holding regular safety refreshers.
- Enforce your policies consistently.
Just one instance of non-compliance can lead to disastrous consequences. As a result, it’s essential to create clear disciplinary policies, and then enforce them 100% of the time. When you design disciplinary policies, focus on behaviors (e.g., not wearing required PPE or coming to work with a 102 fever) and respond accordingly.
- Encourage employees to speak up.
You can’t be everywhere at once, so train your employees to report situations which could be potentially dangerous. Make sure everyone on your staff knows how and to whom dangers should be reported – and reward individuals who identify hazardous conditions or practices.
- Address your biggest compliance barriers.
Language barriers, uncomfortable or outdated PPE, and employee complacency are a few of the many reasons people fail to consistently comply with workplace safety policies. Consider whether these or other factors could be contributing to compliance breakdowns in your organization and develop individual action plans for remedying them on a case by case basis.
- Build a true culture of safety.
A safety culture is more than a collection of procedures and regulations; it’s an organizational atmosphere that puts safety and health at the heart of everything you do. Lead by example. Regularly incorporate safety messaging into employee communications. Hold supervisors accountable for doing their part. Do whatever you can to thread safety-conscious actions and attitudes into every aspect of your operations.
PrideStaff can help you create a safer workplace.
As a leading national workforce solutions provider, PrideStaff works diligently with clients to ensure workplace safety. We thoroughly train and orient each temporary worker, to ensure everyone stays safe, productive and efficient on the job. Contact us for staffing solutions today.