Although many workplace safety topics stay the same from year to year, there are usually some noticeable trends within individual years that stand out. In 2020, workplace safety was marked by COVID-19; however, there were plenty of other workplace safety topics that shared time on center stage.
Here are some of the biggest workplace safety 2020 trends we’ve been talking about all year and expect will continue to gain attention going forward.
Environmental Health and Safety Software
It’s no surprise that in many organizations, employees’ duties are increasing. Juggling more and increasingly complicated tasks as advancements in technology make critical operations more efficient requires increased diligence.
This is where environmental health and safety software comes in. Not only can it streamline processes and increase accountability, but it can also provide something of a guard rail against avoidable failures and workplace accidents. The software solutions that are part of workplace safety 2020 trends focus on things like training, scheduling, incident reporting, and incident investigation. Software modules can typically be tailored to businesses’ needs for maximum employee and administrator support. In addition, they may offer the ability to carry out more complex and in-depth analysis and reporting for improved strategic decision-making.
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Awareness
One of the most significant trends related to workplace safety is the increased attention paid to substance abuse and mental health, both of which can have a significant impact on an individual employee’s performance and have a ripple effect on others’ work.
Safety awareness campaigns provide education to those in management and supervisory roles like human resources, department heads, and team leaders on when and how to assist employees in need. They also inform employees of the support options available to them through company resources like EAP or employee assistance programs so they feel comfortable asking for the help they need. Employee education programs about substance abuse and mental health awareness may have the effect of reducing the potential threats to overall employee morale and productivity caused by these conditions, such as absenteeism.
Health and Wellness
It makes sense that a workforce that is physically fit and well-adjusted is best able to meet the demands of the job with clear thinking and stamina, as well as creativity, problem-solving skills, and flexibility.
Employee health and wellness has continued to grow in relevance to companies’ long-term planning to become one of the top workplace safety 2020 trends. Health and wellness awareness efforts include educating employees about the best ways to manage stress, sponsoring step challenges, and even organizing events like seasonal flu vaccination programs or holiday toy drives for local children in need.
Employers can also support employees’ health and wellness by showing employees that they’re more than just their work. Company picnics, team-building experiences, and shared volunteer days offer an opportunity for employees and company leaders to improve interpersonal relationships, camaraderie, and motivation.
Workplace Safety 2020 Trends
When it comes to workplace safety, there’s always something to discuss; however, each year brings with it standout topics that generate increased attention, enthusiasm, and advocacy. This year, environmental health and safety software, substance abuse and mental health awareness, and health and wellness have received a lot of well-deserved efforts as employers and employees seek to create organizations that are mindful of their most valuable resource, the workforce.