Have you put yourself in the shoes of your workforce recently?  Have you thought about how easy (or difficult!!) your processes to report an incident, hazard or near-miss are? Have you thought about the time and effort required to manually collect and record the health & safety data across your workplace? Safety Culture is not built through several warning signs in your workplace. Although those processes might have made sense at one time, for the modern work force, a new approach is required.

Creating a safety culture across your team means that ALL employees are included in the safety and health program. They are given the needed tools to spot bad safety practices and feel encouraged and motivated to advocate for their safety and the safety of others. Giving your team the empowerment to improve safety across your facilities.

It doesn’t matter what kind of a team you have; it is never too late or hard to implement a safety culture in your organization. This goes a long way towards changing the mindset and the actions of both workers and management.

Implementing Safety Culture

Firstly, it’s important to remember that Rome wasn’t built in a day and transforming your safety culture doesn’t happen overnight. Instead, it requires a solid foundation with commitment and time to a change towards health and safety.

  1. Encourage Participation

First step is communication. When your employees understand the necessary safety standards, they can help with establishing, operating, and improving H&S programs, across all teams in your organisation. Set the standard, by showing workers how they can help keep each other safe. Offer the team straightforward and easy to follow processes for staying up to date with the H&S protocol via email or app service. 

  1. Reporting Concerns

Welcome criticism and concerns from your team. Employees should feel in a comfortable environment to report any health or safety concerns they may have. Therefore, implement an open-door policy that welcomes workers to talk to their managers about any issue and make any suggestions for change. And encourage communication between your co-workers, this can bring to the forefront any potential risks that others within your teams may not have known or considered. Provide a digital portal that allows employees to communicate risks and suggested changes, too. 

  1. Access to Information

Keep in mind that workers can only participate in the program and share the same safety culture when they can easily access all the relevant information they need to engage effectively. They must also be fit to participate in all phases of the program design and implementation. Make. It. Simple. Providing easy to use solutions and applications for your employees is likely to see them engage and stay engaged!

When workers become aware of the hazards and the controls, they can look out for each other when they see someone performing an unsafe act.

  1. Empower Employees

You should help workers believe that safety is a priority no matter what the pressure or deadline. Workers should feel empowered to request a suspension or a shutdown of any work activity or operation they believe to be unsafe. Since they know the most about what should be asked, you should allow them to come forward and ask for any investigation they think is necessary even if it will result in lower production for a day.

  1. Encourage Employees to Share

Including your team’s input at every step of the safety program is the key to a sustainable program over time. It also improves the visibility of workplace hazards. When an employee reports a hazard, it should be mitigated in a timely manner to prevent future injuries or illnesses. Employees will feel more empowered when their suggestions are taken seriously into consideration.

What Now??

Begin to review your H&S protocol across your organisation and how you can roll out the five steps for change. If you want to discuss how Edac can support you and offer you digital solutions, get in touch with one of our team members today  info@edac.ie