The effective management of health and safety in your workplace is a very important driver in the success of your business. It is absolutely crucial that employers, owners, supervisors and senior managers take the initiative to demonstrate effective leadership when it comes to health and safety.
Health and safety management is all about making sure that the health, safety and welfare of all staff is secure, which includes reducing risk, ensuring protection from harm and preventing illness that arises from work activities.
It is the duty and responsibility of the leader to provide a strategic direction for the management of safety and health, so that all staff can engage effectively and ensure safe and healthy practices in the workplace.
The Role of the Manager in Health and Safety
The manager, supervisor or employer is a leader in the workplace and therefore they have an important role to play in influencing the health and safety of all employees.
What are some of the roles and responsibilities that managers are responsible for in the workplace?
First of all, they must set out a strategy or a health and safety policy as well as making targets and monitoring progress toward those targets. Also, they should provide examples of good practice by demonstrating the right action with their own behaviour. A manager should also encourage all staff to be involved in health and safety matters and involve employees in decisions, in order to promote a strong health and safety culture in their workplace.
The Cost of Poor Health and Safety Management
When a workplace suffers from poor leadership and management, this can cause numerous negative consequences for everyone in the workplace. According to many scientific studies, there has been a proven relationship between strong health and safety leadership and improved employee well-being – including decreased sick leave, reduced disability pensions, lower job stress and lower anxiety.
When a company suffers from poor occupational health and safety leadership, this can cause damage to the company’s reputation and can also decrease its operational and financial performance.
Health and safety issues that cause accidents can be quite costly for the company, for a number of reasons. First of all, you will need to factor in the management time that it takes to investigate the incident and the time when production is stopped for investigation.
In contrast, having good health and safety leadership can help to strengthen the reputation of the company, improve subcontractor loyalty, increase morale among employees, enhance the company’s ability to attract the best employees and improve productivity.
Accident and Incident Courses
- NEBOSH HSE Introduction to Incident Investigation
- Accident Investigation course
- Accident and Reporting (RIDDOR)
Developing a Health and Safety Policy
If your company has five or more employees, it is required to have an official written health and safety policy. This policy will describe how you will handle health and safety in your business and will let your staff and others know about the procedures to follow. The policy should clearly state who is responsible for what, how and when.
Writing a health and safety policy doesn’t have to be time consuming or complex. There are templates that you can start with and in your managing safety training you will receive instruction on how to complete the policy. It is also important that your staff review the policy regularly and that you make sure everyone understands it. If there are staff members in your workplace who don’t speak English well, you must make sure that they understand the policy as well (perhaps by providing a translation).
Ensuring That Your Workplace is Safe
It is important to protect the safety and health of the employees in your workplace, including any workers with disabilities. So what do you need to make sure that you supply at your workplace?
First of all, there should be welfare facilities that are provided for the well-being of employees. This includes a clean toilet and sink, with soap and a hand dryer or towels. Also, employees should have access to drinking water and somewhere to rest and eat their meals. They should also have a place to store clothing, as well as somewhere private to change if they need to wear special clothing for work.
It is also important to ensure a healthy working environment. There should be good ventilation in the workplace, including a supply of fresh air and a good ventilation system. Also, the workplace should be kept at a healthy working temperature. The lighting should be suitable for the type of work that is being carried out and all employees should have enough space.
Workstations should be suitable for the task and seating should be comfortable. Also, the workplace should be kept clean with the appropriate waste containers. In order to keep your workplace safe, it is important to keep the floors and the traffic routes free of any obstructions. Also, you should properly maintain the premises and the work equipment.
If there are any glass doors or walls in the workplace, they should be made of safety material or protected.
Of course, these are general health and safety rules that apply to all workplaces. There are also specific requirements that you will need to keep in mind if you work in construction or other high risk workplaces.
Health and Safety Training is Essential
It is very important that managers and employers have the correct health and safety training for their industry, so that they can create a safe and healthy environment in the workplace. In order to learn how to do this properly, they need to have taken the right health and safety training.
- Health and safety courses
- IOSH courses
- NEBOSH courses
- NVQ Health and Safety
- CIEH courses
- Highfield courses
- Managing safely in the workplace
- Equip managers with the right safety skills
- Contractors and managing health and safety
- What is health and safety management?
- Advice on health and safety management courses
- Understanding health and safety legislation
- Occupational health and safety courses
- Writing a health and safety policy