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How to Create Rules That Keep Employees Safe

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were a reported 2.9 million nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses in 2015 – approximately 40,000 cases fewer than were reported to the BLS in 2014. There are likely a number of reasons that workplaces in the United States are safer than they used to be, and the increased vigilance of dedicated employers is one of them. How can your company improve its industrial safety record? For starters, you need to understand how to create rules designed to keep your employees safe.

Step One: Understand Your Responsibilities

Any rules you create should be built reflect regulations set forth by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Their website has a list of employer safety responsibilities that can serve as a guideline while you create your own set of in-house rules. Some tenets like “Provide a workplace free from serious recognized hazards and comply with standards, rules and regulations issued under the OSH Act” will influence general protocol while others, such as "Use color codes, posters, labels or signs to warn employees of potential hazards,” outline specific things you can do to upgrade your safety standards.

Step Two: Embrace Organization

As you set out your new safety rules, craft a complementary checklist that promotes accountability. What tasks need to be accomplished? What checks and balances are in place to ensure that risk is minimized and nothing slips through the cracks? How often should processes be reviewed? Will reports be generated? And if so, who do they go to?

Safety rules are only as strong as the system that supports them. By putting a clear-cut chain of command into place and making the rules easy-to-understand as well as transparent – employee handbooks and safety logs are ideal for this purpose – you’re setting everyone up for success.

Step Three: Supplies on Demand

Instituting company-wide safety rules and offering employee incentive programs to ensure compliance are important, but so is providing employees with the safety items they need in order to meet expectations. In addition to mandates regarding specific safety standards, you should create rules regarding the supplies used to execute those orders. Make sure you order from a top-quality industrial safety supply store, where you can access everything from maintenance supplies to first aid products to signage and know that your purchases will meet not just your standards but OSHA’s as well.

Are you ready to create the rules you need to ensure employee safety? Safety First Supply stocks more than 6,000 top-quality industrial safety products ranging from protective equipment to maintenance items. For help assessing your company’s safety needs, contact us today.
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