Health and safety policies in the workplace are a legal requirement: any businesses which employ five or more members of staff must have a policy in place. These should feature three essential elements: the Statement of Intent (objectives and goals for health and safety targets); organisational responsibilities (responsibilities for management and employees); implementation arrangements (how the business will accomplish these aimsвЂ”this is company-specific).
The Health & Safety at Work Act of 1974 requires these policies to be reviewed and/or revised on a regular basis; any changes should be made clear to all employees so everyone is aware. Aside from meeting your legal obligations, what other benefits of undergoing health and safety training are there?
Risk AssessmentВ By having one or more members of your team trained in workplace health and safety, they will be able to perform risk assessments within your business environmentвЂ”which may help to reduce accidents and maintain maximum safety. Accidents can and do happen as a result of simple oversights, such as equipment not being properly stored or wet floors going unsigned, but with staff trained to identify potential problemsвЂ”and pass on their knowledge to help others do the sameвЂ”your team will be safer from avoidable accidents.
Fewer AbsencesВ Ensuring your workplace is as clean and safe as possible reduces the risk of staff needing time off following accidents or from sickness spread through poor hygiene. This will lead to a more efficient and productive team, particularly if they are more comfortable in their environment; this also reduces the chance of needing to hire/train new temporary staff to fill in for absent employees.
Employees who undergo workplace health and safety will learn new skills and gain vital knowledge they can take from one job to another, adding to their personal skillset and boosting confidence. As they have responsibility for health and safety and risk assessments, these employees will also be the point of contact for other members of staff looking for information on any potential issues.
Strengthen Employer/employee Relations
Building a group of staff trained in health and safety for your workplace will help your entire team feel more valuable and respected by the managementвЂ”this is particularly helpful for businesses in which staff rarely see or communicate with their employers. Having a trained team who will keep the rest of the company up-to-date on risks theyвЂ™ve identified may also enhance morale through helping them feel safer.