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3 Small Business Upgrades to Improve Work Safety

Sheryl Wright

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Small Business Upgrades

Work safety is important in all businesses but critical in a small company. Without the proper guidelines and procedures, an accident or fatality can lead a company with a tight budget to quickly fold. Since three million individuals sustain injuries in the workplace, protecting them and your business is of utmost importance.

Keeping work areas free of debris and reviewing guidelines established by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) isn’t enough. Other upgrades can not only protect a company’s employees but also increase profits and productivity. Here are three such upgrades.

Time Management

Though time management seems more like a payroll routine it’s actually a great way to improve workplace safety. You have to think of it in terms of productivity and training.

One of your machine workers constantly takes unscheduled absences. As a result, someone else has to take their place on the equipment. Should they not have the proper training, they can get injured. On top of this, the machine will need to be stopped for repairs or investigation. In the end, productivity is greatly reduced and the risk of a lawsuit increases.

The way to minimize these types of situations is through time management. Precisely, the implementation of time clocks for small business environments. These items, sold at companies like Lathem, are not of the punch card variety. Instead, they utilize biometrics for proper identification.

Since check-in and check-out require a fingerprint or retinal scan, those who are chronically absent won’t be able to tweak the system. In turn, you’ll be able to take the necessary steps to either rectify the situation or let go of the employee so safety is preserved. Further, these touch-free time clocks can help your employees stay safe during the pandemic by reducing their contact with the same object in a short period of time. 

Training

Once a year training isn’t sufficient to improve work safety. It’s simply a baseline for additional education. This isn’t just for those on the plant floor. There are other safety needs required in a small business.

For instance, employees need training on physical and digital security risks. A rigorous year-round education on subjects like money laundering and cyberattacks gives your workers knowledge of the subjects and how to prevent them. On top of this, they need to know the necessary steps when there’s a fire, flood, tornado, or another event that requires evacuation.

Additionally, the precautions must be practiced. While it may be an inconvenience, fire drills are a necessity. Continuity of Business (CoB) tests are needed to ensure computer data isn’t lost during an attack or a power outage. The more your employees do these the better they’ll understand the necessary tasks should something really happen.

Create A Safety Panel

There’s a scene in the U.S. version of The Office where the entire office staff erupts in chaos when Dwight conducts a fire drill. No one knows what needs to be done. The reason: they didn’t have a plan.

While they had committees for things like parties, the staff of Dunder Mifflin didn’t have a team that dealt with safety. To avoid what happened there, you want to create a safety panel for your business.

The main goal of this team is risk management. They would analyze the company’s risks, determine the percentage of their likelihood, then suggest alternatives to minimize the issues. This could be a reorganization of the work floor or additional training for the staff.

Once they determined what alternatives could do the best at risk mitigation they would implement them and review the results. Each item that didn’t work could be replaced by an alternative. Eventually, your safety panel would have a complete set of tools to reduce risk while maintaining productivity and revenue.

Utilizing the three upgrades to improve work safety in your small business does more than keep your people secure. It also increases their happiness. They see you are doing what you can to keep everyone protected as well as secure data important to the organization.

When employees feel like they’re being listened to they maintain their productivity. Furthermore, you don’t have to constantly train new people because your retention rates increase. Overall, it makes your small business one that people want to work for. It also causes other businesses to ask what you have done to improve work safety so they can do it for their own employees.

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