A safe workplace is a happy, well-functioning workplace with well-protected and well-informed employees. Businesses can do their part to provide the safest possible workplace for their employees, while ensuring that their liability and occupational risk remains relatively low.
Here are 5 proactive tips to keep your workplace safe, healthy and happy.
Wear Your Monday Best
Occupation specific clothing or uniform helps foster a sense of workplace belonging and identifies employees as certified members of an organisation. It also ensures that employees with occupation specific hazards are attired appropriately for their profession, meaning that the ongoing company liability is lessened. Uniforms and occupation specific clothing are also tax deductible, meaning that businesses and individuals can claim tax exemptions for their use and for their ongoing upkeep.
Uniforms and occupation specific clothing are widely available both instore and online from retailers such as Treloar Apparel. Companies ordering wholesale can often request discounts for bulk orders too.
Test, Test, Test
Depending on your workplace, there will be shared electrical equipment of varying usage and danger. It’s important to have these pieces of equipment evaluated and checked for safety at regular intervals. Test and tag services can be called upon to test, report and fix faults in your equipment.
Once completed, they tag each item with a time and date stamp, and document any maintenance or issues. This introduces accountability (should anything go wrong with the item in the future) and will protect your workplace in case of insurance or liability issues.
It’s a smart step to look out for safe behaviours in the workplace and to reward these behaviours.
This type of behaviour modification helps introduce a culture of safety which is associated with positive process and reward, hopefully leading to the wider adoption of safer habits.
Rewards programs can be created with the aim of formally recognising safe employee habits, with regular communication recognising employees who achieve highly. A monthly or annual reward can even be given for outstanding behaviour.
Follow The Leader
Leading by example is a sure-fire way to encourage safer workplace behaviours.
Don’t like onsite chit-chat? Don’t engage with it, and instead complement hard and focussed work. Don’t appreciate misuse of equipment, or appropriation of office supplies? Use and label the equipment correctly and make sure to regularly engage with employees and co-workers while you’re performing tasks in the correct manner.
Healthy & Happy
A safe workplace is one where workers are encouraged to take the time to recuperate (if they’re unwell) and to take time out if their health and well-being could cause danger to themselves or to someone else. Employee health goes beyond physical sickness; consider having available information and support services for mental health, and encourage colleagues and employees to take any available steps to use these services as needed.
Identify any unhealthy issues (alcoholism or drug use in the workplace, over-availability of unhealthy food options) surrounding workplace health and attempt to address these issues head-on. Make sure that your workplace has a well-communicated drug and alcohol policy, and provide regular reminders of this policy to employees, as well as acknowledging any available support services.
A cheap, effective way to begin a company-wide focus on healthy eating habits is to make healthier options more visible. Provide fruit and filtered water for employees, and encourage regular eating and exercise breaks away from working areas.
Safe workplaces are not hard to maintain. With the tips above and through positive, good leadership, your workplace can remain a safe, stable space for all employees well into the future.