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Any company that takes workplace health and safety seriously knows that it needs to get employees on board with its safety policies. If workers aren’t willing to follow along and take workplace safety seriously, it’s impossible to create the safest work environment possible.
But how can employers get workers to buy into safety and make them committed to following safety protocols? Let’s look at some potential strategies for encouraging employees to become committed to doing their jobs safely and keeping everyone at work protected.
No matter the situation, it always helps to get something in writing. Some companies want their workers to officially sign their name on a list of their safety rules and policies as a type of formal agreement. But can employers force employees to sign a safety commitment? Technically, employers can’t force an employee to sign anything acknowledging that they understand workplace safety rules. But that doesn’t mean that employers can’t ask and encourage all new employees to read safety policies and sign their names at the end. While it won’t mean anything in legal terms, it does help send the message that the company is serious about safety while encouraging workers to do the same.
Unfortunately, some workers don’t take safety seriously because they don’t understand why they need to. Even if it sounds simple and obvious, company leaders should make it a point to explain why safety matters and what can go wrong if it’s not taken seriously. Let employees know that occupational health and safety is a team effort and requires a commitment from everyone to help protect everyone else. With any luck, this will inspire a sense of camaraderie within the staff to commit to being safe and keeping everyone else safe.
Good leadership can make a huge difference in all aspects of a company, including safety. If leaders show that they’re committed to safety, it’ll be easier for employees to follow. Frankly, they won’t have an excuse for not taking safety seriously as well. But this means that all company leaders, managers, and supervisors need to talk the talk and walk the walk. If there is any inkling that leaders are disingenuous when they say they care about safety, it’ll be harder to convince employees to fall in line.
The consequences of poor workplace safety are often negative, but the approach to safety must be positive. Rather than looking for ways to punish employees who don’t commit to safety, look for ways to approach safety in a positive manner. Don’t scold an employee for doing the wrong thing, just demonstrate a safer way to work. At the same time, the employees who go about things the right way should be recognized and rewarded for their efforts. When everyone else sees that those are the employees getting the attention, others will be inspired to make a commitment to workplace safety as well.
If you don’t seek feedback from employees about safety, you’re doing the company a disservice. Those who work on the frontlines usually have the best insight and advice to improve safety. The trick is you have to ask them. Try creating an incentive program that rewards employees who come up with an idea to improve safety that ends up being implemented. It doesn’t matter if they came up with the idea just for the reward, the only thing that matters is that the workplace is safer.
One way to keep employees engaged and committed to safety is to give them the right safety management software. The software offered by EHS Insight encompasses all aspects of occupational health and safety and can be utilized by anyone in the workplace. It keeps employees connected to safety and ensures that safety is managed effectively.
If you want a better way to manage workplace health and safety, let us know and we can have our software set up in no time.
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