Safety Best Practices
Ensuring employee safety is a cardinal rule for any workplace. Potential employees are less likely to flock to job applications for companies that are deemed dangerous to work for. Likewise, customers won’t buy from these companies, even if they have better deals.
Aside from profitability, safe workplaces also help generate more market interest. This is especially true in the construction industry, which features some of the most hazardous jobs. In fact, the Office of Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reported that one out of every five deaths in the workplace in 2019 came from the construction industry.
A construction company with stellar employee safety records is more likely to earn a great reputation in the market. As a result, they often also sport healthier bottom lines. How so? Well, companies that pay attention to safety and health guidelines often end up with fewer onsite safety issues. Providing a safe workplace allows these companies to deal with fewer liabilities like workers’ compensation and insurance investigations.
Unfortunately, many companies look at occupational health and safety compliance as just another added cost. Instead of prioritizing safety, these companies would rather pay OSHA-mandated fines or worker’s compensation. They don’t realize that implementing health and safety programs before starting a project can help save on incidental costs. According to OSHA, companies that strictly adhere to industry safety guidelines can save between 20% to 40% on accident and illness costs.
Of course, most companies proudly say they have insurance to cover these costs. However, depending on insurance to save your business some money is not a smart move. While insurance may cover some or all damages related to workplace accidents, your succeeding premiums may take a hit if insurers find accidents happening too frequently. Instead of handing their liabilities over to insurance adjusters, construction firms can keep their costs low by instilling responsible employee safety and health programs. As they often say, “An ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure.”
The Office of Safety and Health Administration ensures that workplace conditions do not have more risks than are necessary for the job. This office holds the power of levying fines and other penalties on firms found violating safety guidelines. Penalties levied by OSHA apply on top of any damages paid to injured workers. Apart from the federal OSHA, states have local counterparts that can also issue their own findings and impose their own penalties.
A single workplace accident can lead to numerous fines. OSHA findings that show willful or repeated violations will incur additional punishments. Ultimately, these costs will compound due to numerous project delays and result in an unprofitable project. This doesn’t even factor in additional problems like worker turnover, litigation costs, and contract overrun fines.
Similar to dealing with workplace insurance, instilling health and safety programs can help you avoid OSHA’s mandated fines in the first place. Apart from avoiding fines and saving money, you can spare your projects from protracted delays that tend to happen during investigations and hearings.
If a company scrimps on worker safety and health programs, they are more likely to experience bigger problems down the line. Conversely, prioritizing employee safety can provide a myriad of benefits apart from the aforementioned savings.
Foremost among these benefits is a heightened sense of employee appreciation. Employees tend to be happier when they know that the company they work for is actively protecting their welfare. Additionally, productivity will increase as workers will have fewer concerns about what could happen to them at their workplace.
Employee safety programs can also lead to better worker retention. Obviously, workers who aren’t worried about potential workplace accidents will last longer on the job. More importantly, when they feel secure with existing safety programs, these workers will choose to stay at their present jobs.
Finally, a good employee safety program produces higher quality work at construction sites. With workers undistracted by looming safety issues and lack of support, they can better focus on the job at hand. Construction companies unencumbered by OSHA penalties and worker liabilities can devote more resources to improving construction materials, equipment, and processes. When combined, these improvements can help create projects that are well-constructed, safe, and finished on time.
Ultimately, your company’s reputation as a safety-conscious contractor can help you attract attention industry-wide. This will also draw other members of the construction sector to your company, helping them to get to know you better.
A good safety record is one of the top considerations for clients who are looking for their next contractor. Some traits these clients value in a company include employing productive workers, providing valuable training, and implementing safety programs.
When a worker hears about a construction firm that provides a safe workplace, guess where they’ll want to work? More than just a good salary, prospective employees are looking to work for companies that make sure their workers stay healthy and productive.
Building material suppliers and specialty construction firms prefer working with reputable companies. Manufacturers looking to advertise their involvement in a new project tend to partner with companies that have no outstanding issues on their safety records
Agencies like OSHA are constantly on the lookout for companies that best exemplify their ideals. They want to recognize contractors with great safety records so they can serve as examples for other firms. The additional exposure that comes from this endorsement can help attract even more clients in the process.
Improving your company’s employee safety programs starts with making safety more accessible for your entire team. A great way to jumpstart your safety efforts is to depart from paper-based records. You can also host regular safety sessions to drill down guidelines and get your team involved. When your contractors buy into the idea of “Safety First,” they can better focus on getting the job done.
Salus is modern safety management software that helps companies comply with industry guidelines on employee safety and health. Salus provides construction firms with a way to digitally customize safety forms. This allows workers to access and fill out these forms on the go and then instantly transmit them to company headquarters. Salus also provides cloud access to digital copies of safety procedures, guidelines, and other documents. Teams can easily refer to these guidelines using their smart devices, which can significantly boost company compliance. Finally, it allows officers and managers to monitor safety compliance programs and review documents in real time.
If you want to drastically improve your company’s safety compliance, contact us to chat and learn more about how Salus can fulfill your particular needs. Afterward, we’ll be more than happy to give you a free demonstration of the power of digital safety.