5 ways to improve health and safety in the workplace
Health and safety in the workplace needs to be a key priority for office and site managers to safeguard staff and reduce the risk of preventable accidents, injuries and even fatalities.
The Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 are in place to provide bosses with guidelines on improving health and safety in the workplace, while Virtual College offers a range of e-learning courses covering health and safety at work to increase knowledge in this area.
It is vital that employers take this seriously, as statistics from the Health and Safety Executive show that some 609,000 workplace injuries were recorded in 2017-18, along with 144 workplace fatalities, while a total of 1.3 million people in the UK suffer from a work-related illness.
With this in mind, here are a few top tips for complying with health and safety legislation and improving the safety of workers:
1. Inspect your workplace
Before implementing a new approach to health and safety in the workplace at your organisation, you need to carry out a full inspection. Call in a registered health and safety officer to help with this, as they will be best placed to identify potential hazards or pitfalls in the layout of your workplace.
2. Create a health and safety plan
A health and safety plan to help you control and eliminate potential risks can be a big help. Make sure you communicate to employees whatever is decided as part of the plan, so that everyone is working towards creating a safer workplace together.
3. Train employees in health and safety at work
Another way to make sure everyone is striving for the same health and safety goals is to provide health and safety training to all staff. This should be standard practice in labour-intensive jobs where the risk of injury is naturally higher.
4. Hold regular meetings
Once all staff have undergone health and safety training, regular meetings should be held where employees can raise any concerns and suggest improvements to health and safety in the workplace moving forward. This will show them that management cares about their safety, making them feel more valued, while allowing team leaders to find out about hazards they may have missed.
5. Maintain health and safety records
Health and safety records should be kept and updated regularly, including when incidents occur, when training has been completed, and where concerns have been raised, with outcomes also logged. Having this level of visibility over all health and safety-related activity should help to increase transparency and subsequently encourage a higher standard of health and safety in the workplace.
At Virtual College, we have a range of e-learning courses covering health and safety at work, including how to implement training and how to keep records. Browse our full offering here.