The workplace is safer today than ever before. That’s because employers take employee safety seriously in new and innovative ways. Gone are the days of telling employees to “be careful out there” or assuming that workers automatically know how to keep themselves safe on the job.
Today, employers want their people to feel secure in their workplaces, knowing that they can rely on their employer for help if they need it. Here are some of the latest trends in employee safety!
1) Safety Training
Employers have made jobs safer by providing comprehensive training so employees know what hazards might exist at work sites or while using equipment and how best to avoid them. With these, employees receive the skills to work through potential safety hazards on their own, reducing the need for safety managers to intervene.
From OSHA-required general industry training to specialized training for specific job-related hazards, employers make sure workers know how to keep themselves out of harm’s way. This is important as training makes employees feel empowered to take the necessary steps toward safety on their own.
2) Protective Apparel
Employers are also incorporating apparel into safety training to learn about workplace dangers while getting accustomed to wearing personal protective equipment (PPE). For example, some companies may provide high-risk employees with safety shirts where the front of the shirt has a hazard message on it while the back of the shirt says “How to avoid this hazard.”
This way, employees get familiar with PPE while learning about potential dangers at work. Of course, employers are increasingly providing their employees with PPE when they are in trouble, including items like safety glasses, gloves, helmets, earplugs, and more.
3) Safety Incentives and Rewards
Employers want their workers to feel safe in their jobs, and some employers are using incentives to make sure their employees stay safe and sound. Some companies may offer bonuses or rewards to workers who engage in activities like safety contests, where teams compete against each other to see which team can keep members injury-free for the most consecutive days.
Other employers may give awards for completing safety training or low injury records. Incentives and rewards can help boost morale and make employees feel appreciated.
4) Workplace Technology
In addition to safety training and personal protective equipment, technology plays a significant role in keeping workers safe. Employers are adding advanced sensors to their sites that notify workers of hazardous conditions before they even have a chance to come into contact with them.
For example, some manufacturers are working on unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) that can detect toxic or combustible gases in the air and alert workers to evacuate the area safely. Employers are also looking at technology like Google Glass to help worker monitor their surroundings more closely than before.
5) Routine Equipment Maintenance
Just as you rely on your car to get you places safely, employees expect the equipment that their employers provide them to be up-to-date and in good condition. If equipment is broken or unsafe to use, it should be marked as such so workers will know not to touch it until it’s fixed by a professional.
To keep employees safe, inspections for fall protection equipment should be required. Inspections should be done every six months to ensure all equipment is safe and satisfactory for use. All safety gear, such as safety harnesses, safety lanyards, hard hats, etc., must be inspected by a competent person before each day’s use.
6) Wearable technology
One of the latest trends in employee safety is to use wearable technology that can help workers feel safer on the job. Think about it—you’re less likely to get into an accident when you know your car is working correctly, aren’t you?
An example of wearable technology is smartwatches. These wrist-bound gadgets provide users with GPS functionality if they need help getting out of dangerous situations in a hurry. Other devices can monitor a user’s health and wellness to ensure they don’t get too exhausted while performing strenuous work.
And that’s just the beginning of what this technology has to offer! The workplace is safer today than ever before. Employers are taking employee safety seriously in new and innovative ways because technology allows companies to take precautions creatively.
These trends in employee safety show that employers are taking an active role in keeping their employees safe. As the face of work is changing, so too must how employers think about and plan for worker safety. This way, employees can get the most out of their jobs while protecting themselves from harm.