Business owners must always provide a safe working environment regardless of the number of employees they have. This is an important step in retaining workers, ensuring their health and improving productivity.
Creating a safe workplace may involve some investment on safety equipment and other tools but the benefits are for the long term. Additionally, the beneficiaries go beyond your staff as they can also include your customers and the general public.
When a work environment is safe, business owners can also prevent injuries and diseases and promote the well-being of their workers.
Follow the Law
Regardless of geographical location, owners of private businesses must always follow the law on work safety implemented by the governments in their respective localities. Failure to do so can lead to fines, criminal penalties and worse, a jail term.
The main objective of this workplace safety law is to keep employees safe and lower the risk of illnesses and accidents in the workplace. Certain government agencies particularly those focusing on labor conduct investigations in case of violations and non-compliance.
In the U.S., the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) was passed in 1970. This law specifies the rights of employees and the responsibilities of employers to their staff.
Install Safety Equipment
One of the ways that entrepreneurs can promote a safe workplace is by installing safety equipment. In an office setting, for instance, provision of the necessary tables and chairs, heaters and air conditioning units, electronic equipment and fire alarm systems are of utmost importance.
The computer and paper shredders are some of the standard tools businesses invest in today. The computer is necessary in storing vital company and employee information and while the role of a paper shredder is to ensure that nobody gets to pick out anything from business documents you want to dispose of your business documents.
With regards to computers, they must be password-protected to prevent vital information from being stolen by employees and other people. A backup system must also be installed and passwords must be changed regularly.
Establish Safety Policy
Implementing a work safety policy should also be a priority of every business owner who manages employees. Your policy should state the ways you will manage safety and your workers’ health while they are in your premises.
A standard policy features three sections – a statement of intent, organization details and arrangements. The statement of intent specifies your company’s commitment to health and safety particularly for your workers while the organization details provides the names of people and their responsibilities with regards to health and safety in your business. The arrangements section, on the other hand, explains the ways you will control hazards identified during your risk assessment.
Hire an Attorney
Getting the assistance of a legal professional such as an injury attorney is also an ideal move. This will help you ensure that your business complies with the safety regulations in your area and avoid liability issues moving forward.
An attorney specializing in personal injury can guide you on the legal steps to take in the event you get sued by an employee who encountered an accident while performing his or her work in your premises.
Keep in mind that as a business owner, the safety of the people working for you should always be top priority. It is through this that you can achieve your goals and in turn, help your staff improve their skills.