Ensuring workplace safety is part of running a business. No small business owner would want to put the life and well-being of its employees at risk. More so, no business owner would want to face legal raps for negligence and failure to keep the safety of its workers in mind.
Accidents can happen at any time. Though they might not always be prevented, their occurrence can be minimized with certain measures. Below are some steps that small business owners can take to reduce the chances of accidents happening in the work areas.
Put Signs in Strategic Areas
Most businesses may already have safety measures written in their rule books for every new hire and existing employee. But having these measures in rule books is not enough. Employees should be constantly reminded of the dangers and the safety procedures that they should follow. To do this, putting signs in strategic areas in the workplace should be made compulsory.
The signs should contain reminders about the dangers in the area and the measures they should take to prevent any accident. To make sure that employees will follow every rule, installing security cameras around the place can help. When employees know that their actions can be seen through the CCTV monitors, they are more likely to follow the imposed safety rules.
Employees should be made aware that they are responsible for their own safety and the safety of their colleagues. Small business owners should make it a point to create a work culture where employees will feel responsible for everyone’s welfare within the workplace. For a start, employees should be trained comprehensively about workplace safety and workplace injury prevention. They should also be given access to complete training based on their positions to know the hazards that come with each of the positions they hold.
It should be made part of the employees’ responsibilities to keep their areas clean and free from any obstacles that can cause falls and injuries. They should always be reminded to keep things in the right places and clean their areas after their shifts. A messy workspace is susceptible to unnecessary accidents. Disorganized tools, wet floors, tangled wires, cluttered boxes — all of these can lead to falls and injuries. To ensure that all employees will follow the cleanliness protocols, conduct regular inspections in their work areas.
Reward Safety Behaviors
Some employees may find it hard to follow certain safety rules for whatever reason. To encourage them to take the right security measures, reward those employees that follow the rules to a T. For instance, employees with zero accidents can be given plaques of appreciation with cash awards after a full year of no incident inside the workplace. Employees are more likely to follow the rules when they know that they will be rewarded for their efforts to cooperate.
It might be hard for small business owners to know every issue in the workplace without the employees telling them. Especially if business operations require many other responsibilities than just always checking with the activities of the employees or the health of the machines, small business owners may sometimes fail to realize that there are serious technical issues that are slowly forming within the workspace.
To prevent any potential problem from happening without knowing the business owner or the executives, employees should always be encouraged to communicate any issue they may encounter in their work areas. For instance, if employees notice some problems with the machines they are using, they should feel free to report the problem to their superiors.
Review Safety Practices
Some operational strategies may change, and along with them, the safety measures that should be taken. Holding regular meetings regarding safety precautions and possible hazards can help maintain safety in the workplace. Safety meetings can be done daily, weekly, or monthly based on the needs of the organization. Holding regular meetings reminds employees to take part in keeping the work areas safe; it also keeps them updated about the changes in their work areas and the plans of the management for them.
Partnering with occupational clinicians is also a good move. The clinicians can visit and inspect the workplace and see if there are things that need to be improved in the area for the safety of everyone. The clinicians can identify high-risk areas for employee injuries. They can also help screen potential employees for roles that are physically demanding.