Safe Operations

5 Important Tips to Improve Your Company’s Culture of Safe Operations

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Corporate culture encompasses so many moving parts, from employee conduct, onboarding processes, perks and benefits, all the way to safety. They all need to contribute to a greater sense of trust and mutual respect, and in that sense, safety rules and precautions are the key piece of the puzzle. Safe operations ensure that you can preserve your company values and develop internal relationships with these same values in mind.

Building that kind of safety-centered culture can be difficult, especially when you have many different sectors to consider. The pandemic, however, has helped many companies make the switch and focus on safety more than ever. If you’re still struggling with this part of your corporate culture, look at the following ideas that can help you improve.

Make sure your workplace is safe

People are at the center of your safety-related changes, but they alone cannot make much of a difference if their workplace is too hazardous to begin with. Start by assessing the safety standards in the workplace itself. You’ll be able to spot subpar office features or if you’re operating a large-scale process such as manufacturing or inventory management, you can detect safety issues.

Perhaps you will need to change your office flooring, the layout plan, or choose a different way to manage all the cords from the used technology. Maybe your construction site needs better lighting and clear signs to help people discern where they can safely move and how to reach specific points. 

Safety begins with determining if your workplace is easy enough to navigate and if you can do anything to reduce the risk of injuries, falls, slips, and the like. 

Provide employee training

Now that you’ve taken care of the physical space, you should equip your employees with the right knowledge and skills to handle themselves properly at work. Every position within your organization comes with different responsibilities. Then there are universal situations in which each person should know what to do. In case of an emergency such as a power outage, everyone needs to know the right protocols. 

contractor coworkers
Thumbs up by contractor coworkers at a construction site

As part of your onboarding procedures, provide up-to-date safety training modules to help your newest staff adapt. At the same time, make sure that your long-time employees have access to regular workshops and training to help them adapt to the changing work conditions and embrace the latest safety procedures.

Ensure optimal workwear

Based on your location, your business should have the latest approved workwear and other equipment to ensure optimal safety levels. For example, workwear in Australia comprises of clothing that ensures optimal mobility and flexibility, but also proper thermoregulation and protection from the elements and on-site hazards. 

Relying on accessories such as vests and helmets also contributes to better visibility, so each worker can spot one another and avoid accidents while operating heavy machinery. In case of working in noise-polluted environments, having protective gear such as earmuffs or earplugs can make all the difference. 

Evaluate your safety standards

The pandemic has shown us just how quickly things can change around us, so we, too, need to adapt. In the spirit of change, you should be prepared to conduct ongoing evaluations of your workplace as well as your employees’ readiness in certain situations. Drills of different kinds can show you if they know how to apply their training or if you should go back to basics.

Health and Safety Policy
Health and Safety Policy Statement Form Concept

These evaluations will allow you to address workplace hazards and prevent injuries in time. Once again, depending on your location, the local laws and regulations define what kind of prerequisites you should have in mind to ensure a safe workplace. However, as a mindful, culture-focused employer, you also need to go well beyond those fundamentals and make sure you go that extra mile to ensure safety for everyone. 

Reward your safety champions 

Motivation matters even when it comes to safety, especially when your workers have many responsibilities, and they don’t want to worry about anything “extra” on their plates. For starters, recognizing their accountability in all safety precautions is vital. You, as their employer, can show that you value their commitment to safety through various incentive programs.

Recognize the people in your business who consistently excel at safety drills and implement all safety protocols. Make sure that everyone knows how much you appreciate their contribution, and you’ll have the opportunity to build safety into the corporate mindset in your business. 

In conclusion

Changing policies might seem simple enough, all you need to do is rewrite the manual and you’re good to go. The issues arise when it’s time to implement these changes across the entire business, your employees especially. 

If people aren’t certain what you expect them to do and what kind of standards they should pursue, chances are you’ll still experience safety problems. With the right culture changes, you can make sure your employees are safe in the workplace, but also accountable for their actions and prepared to handle their responsibilities every day.

Mike Johnston

Mike Johnston is an experienced writer, blogger, and editor with a background in marketing and creative writing. He’s produced thousands of pages of original, engaging content for numerous online publications throughout his career. Mike’s specialties are business and technology, but he also often covers careers, lifestyle and work-life balance.

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