All employers have a responsibility to make sure that their workplace is safe for their staff. It improves productivity if the workplace is safe and secure and there are strict penalties if you’re on the wrong side of health and safety regulation.
There are plenty of obvious health and safety concerns in a business-like warehouse equipment, trip hazards and electrical appliances etc. But there are a lot more potential hazards than you realize and if you miss anything, you’re putting your employees in danger. When you’re having a look at your health and safety procedures, make sure that you don’t overlook these details.
When people are looking for dangers around the workplace, they’re usually focused on physical dangers. But the number one thing that is potentially harming your employees is stress, the hidden danger. People are increasingly taking their work home with them and answering emails so they’re not really getting proper downtime.
Workloads are increasing as well and people are taking less time off and that all leads to high stress levels. If those stress levels are left unchecked, it can lead to more serious mental health problems. That’s why it’s so important that you learn how to manage your employee’s stress levels. Make sure that you’re communicating with them and asking whether they are managing their workload properly and give them a good amount of days off. If employees aren’t taking enough time off, you need to encourage them to have a break.
Getting rid of trip hazards is one of the most basic health and safety fixes but what about the actual floor itself? You can clear everything out of the way but that doesn’t mean that there are no trip hazards.
If you’ve got a carpet that is peeling up at the edges, people can easily trip and fall. If you’ve got concrete flooring, that can be a bit of a nightmare as well because it’s very slippery sometimes. But if you get it polished (you can find a professional service at https://concretefloorpolisher.co.uk) it’ll reduce the dangers by making it far less slippery. Don’t forget to put out wet floor signs etc. when you’re cleaning the workplace, otherwise, you’re going to get sued if somebody has an accident.
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You’re probably fed up with people telling you that you need to drink 8 glasses of water every day to stay healthy, but it’s true. Most people aren’t good at keeping up with their water intake during the day and in some cases, it can lead to fatigue, dizziness, and lethargy. Your employees are damaging their health and their productivity is affected if they’re not drinking enough water so it’s a good idea to encourage them. Put a good amount of water coolers around the workplace so people always stay hydrated.
Distractions in the workplace are a big productivity killer but in some situations, they can actually be a big health and safety concern. If your staff are operating dangerous equipment and they’re listening to music or messing about on their phones at the same time, they’re far more likely to make a big mistake and have an accident.
Sometimes, it’s not the best idea to have strict policies on things like phones as long as all of your employees are getting their work done because restrictive policies sometimes hurt productivity (check out https://resources.workable.com/ for a good example of a company phone policy). However, you do need to have strict policies for people that are working with dangerous equipment that need their full attention. Let people know that they’re free to do whatever they like during their breaks but when they’re on the clock, they need to be distraction free.
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Screen time is a contentious issue at the moment because most employees are using a computer all day long but it can put a lot of strain on the eyes and, over time, cause some serious damage. The problem is, you can’t really avoid it because your staff need to use their computers to do their jobs. However, there are ways that you can reduce the eye strain and avoid any long term damage.
Taking regular breaks is so important when you’re using a computer all day long so you should encourage your employees to follow the 20/20/20 rule; that means taking a 20 second break every 20 minutes to focus on something 20 metres away. You can also change the color composition on the screen to make it easier on the eyes which is a massive help.
If you overlook these hidden health and safety problems around the workplace, you’re not creating a safe environment for your employees.