Health and Safety applies to all of us, no matter what role we have in our working lives. We all have a responsibility for our own welfare and the welfare of those around us. In the workplace, businesses must endeavour to provide a safe environment for employees, contractors, visitors and customers.
To maintain a safe working environment, businesses must invest in providing the right knowledge and tools to achieve health and safety compliance throughout the organisation.
These are 6 business benefits which can be realised through good health and safety practices:
- Staff wellbeing leads to greater productivity.
In businesses where the health and safety of employees is prioritised it enables workers to feel valued within the organisation. When the right tools are available and in a safe working order, it increases productivity and morale. Having procedures for health and safety in place encourages employees to be aware when things aren’t right and offers the safe means to “whistleblow” unsafe practices without fear.
- Reduction in stress, illness and absenteeism.
Unsafe environments cause stress and discontent in the workplace. Stress can lead to periods of absenteeism and long-term illness for employees and business owners. In turn, this can lead to employing temporary staff, increased training costs and sickness cover. In contrast, a safe working environment can enable employees to thrive.
- Good health and safety practices minimise workplace injury and loss of life.
Having written procedures for workplace health and safety can set out how machinery should be used, by whom and for how long. Whether working at a desk, driving a vehicle, stacking shelves or any other workplace task, everything has different levels of health and safety risk which should be assessed regularly and adjusted where needed.
- Written procedures assist regular checks, so action is taken when required.
Having a written policy and/or employee handbook means your health and safety requirements are visible for anyone who needs to refer to them. If there are routine checks, e.g. checking fire safety equipment or evacuation procedures, these can be documented and allocated to a nominated employee to record when the checks have been carried out and when action to replace equipment or unblock an exit has been completed.
- Outsourcing Health and Safety gives peace of mind and ensures compliance.
With the growing number of items to check, many organisations prefer to outsource risk assessments and health and safety compliance. Whether the requirements are for hourly, daily, weekly, monthly or annual checks, the third party ensures the business is using safe practices, including impartiality and confidentiality for staff to raise sensitive concerns, such as violence or abuse in the workplace.
- Ensuring your business complies with the law.
The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 sets out how businesses must protect the health, safety and welfare at work for all employees, as well as anyone on their premises, including temporary and casual workers, customers, visitors and the public. The law is in place to ensure businesses carry out regular and routine checks in all aspects of their day to day transactions.
Writing down your health and safety requirements and making these available to anyone who works at, or visits, your premises is a starting point. Implementing good health and safety practices takes time and due diligence from everyone.
Please contact us for more information on how we can help you benefit from good health and safety practices and staff training on health and safety in the workplace.