Employee Safety

Several methods for improving your companies safety record

It may have been a long time since you felt real spring fever. To see it in action, the best vantage point may be the parking lot of your local high school, which is where Doris Pugh was this week.

“I watched a group of about seven young men, (who were apparently taking an ‘unscheduled’ break from A.P. biology), rip the sleeves and side seams out of the T-shirts they were wearing. Then they all piled into the back of a beat-up pickup and sped off in a shower of gravel. All I could do was hope that all of that reckless abandon didn’t turn somebody’s Ford F-series into an abandoned wreck,” she writes.

The tulips are high. Common sense is at an all-time low. As any emergency room physician can tell you, the rise in temperature brings with it a correspondent rise in accidents. A PEO’s goal is to be sure they’ve done everything they can to help keep you and your employees’ safe. Accidents affect more than your workers’ compensation premiums. They affect productivity, morale, and a host of other elements.

There are several methods for helping you improve or maintain your company’s safety record. Here are just a few of them:

  • Have your PEO help you write and publish a formal manual on employee safety.
  • Offer safety training and OSHA compliance programs.
  • Establish a progressive discipline system so you can easily deal with infractions putting your company at risk.
  • Audit your job descriptions to assure that they accurately portray the physical requirements for essential job functions.
  • With the help of your PEO, perform periodic audits of the worksite to help you spot and eliminate potential problems.

Your efforts as an employer or manager are vital to the success of your company’s safety program. Make sure your employee evaluations include a rating for ’employee safety performance.’ In addition, be certain that discipline for safety violations is documented, fair, and consistent.

“A good safety program has employee involvement, hazard analysis, and injury reporting,” according to Bill Sims Jr. Mr. Sims is a published authority on safety programs that work. He recommends a “safety incentive” program to improve safety.

Incentive programs have to be administered carefully, or they have the potential to encourage employees to ‘hide’ injuries once they happen. According to Sims, the first consideration is what behaviors need to be rewarded. If you reward someone for ‘not getting hurt,’ you increase the likelihood that accidents will go unreported, and the safety hazards that caused the problems will remain unchecked. Instead, Sims suggests rewarding behaviors like making safety suggestions, spotting and reporting close calls, achieving behavioral safety goals, attending safety meetings, etc. We can help you create a program that will meet your company’s needs.