Last Updated 22 March 2019
For businesses, health and safety should always be a top priority, even if the industry they’re part of isn’t considered to be highly regulated or undertake high-risk activities. Any company is at risk if they don’t ensure that appropriate measures are in place to manage health and safety risks. Failing to do so could have serious repercussions. The benefits of health and safety are apparent from an employee standpoint, but it’s also a vital part of the overall success of a company.
First and foremost a key benefit of health and safety is looking after your employees. Let’s face it, they are your most valuable asset. Staff members should always feel safe in the workplace, so it’s important that employers ensure that the right health and safety provisions are in place which will help to mitigate risk and provide a safe and healthy workforce.
Protecting employees will help to reduce the number and severity of injuries and illness caused by accidents at work. The most common of which include back pain from lifting, injuries from trips or slips, falling from heights and upper limb disorders as a result of computer use.
The protection of employees should also extend to looking after employees suffering from mental health issues. Although work may not be the cause of employees mental health issues, having processes in place where employees feel supported and know how they can access help will ensure that your employees are at work and not on sick leave. Have a look at our most recent blog which talked about mental health issues in the workplace and provided a tool that can be used to pin-point areas of concern, which can then be used to provide suitable solutions.
Good health and safety can go a long way to increasing the overall productivity of your business. With the right measures in place, employees will be able to do their job more efficiently and remain safe while doing so. Let’s take personal protective equipment (PPE) as an example. If your staff have to wear PPE to undertake certain workplace tasks, providing PPE near to where it is needed and also providing adequate training in its use (where required) will ensure that more time is spent on the tasks at hand rather than staff either searching for PPE or figuring out how to use it.
A safe workplace will give staff members a morale boost. They’ll have peace of mind knowing that they can go about their day to day activities aware that key health and safety provisions are in place. You want your employees leaving work in the same physical condition as they arrived, well maybe a bit more tired.
A company with a poor history of health and safety or a workplace plagued with accidents isn’t going to have an excellent reputation in their industry, with customers or employees. Many customers before they will work with a company are now requesting a copy of their health and safety policy. This policy can say a lot about an organisation and gives a good idea of how they see heath and safety and their commitments towards having a safe workplace.
If you work in an industry where large machinery plays an essential role, then health and safety is even more important. Your service or machines may well be superior to your competitors, but if your company has a bad reputation for health and safety, then customers won’t want to risk hiring you.
A reputation can be the most compelling attribute when trying to build up a loyal customer base. If you’re well known for providing a quality service in a safe and professional manner, you’ll be the preferred choice to do business with.
Injuries or illness caused by poor health and safety will lead to an increase in employee time off and sick leave. Whether you’re part of a large organisation or a small business, this can cause problems, especially if the person on sick leave plays an integral role in the day-to-day running of your business.
If a staff member has a more severe problem and requires an extended amount of time off, then you may have to hire someone new or train a current employee to take over the post. Both recruiting and training costs money, for some businesses it’s money they don’t have — especially when they already have to continue to pay an allotted amount of sick pay to the staff member who’s absent.
Good health and safety will help you to mitigate these risks by adopting good health and safety practices. By doing everything you can at your end, you will keep your staff as safe as possible and reduce the amount of sick leave and time off.
As part of a program to reduce sick leave and time off based on a work-related injury or illness having access to the services of an occupational health professional will ensure that illnesses are quickly diagnosed and appropriate treatment options are instigated.
Maintaining a good standard of health and safety could reduce the amount you have to pay out for insurance, and this can be a massive business benefit for companies who have a lot of assets to insure.
If there’s an accident at work, or if insurance doesn’t cover an expensive piece of machinery, then it will have to be paid for out of the business’s income and also may raise your insurance premium. Another thing to consider is whether or not your insurance will cover sick days or loss of revenue caused by production delays. If not, then you could stand to lose plenty of money.
Good health and safety in the workplace will help you to avoid these types of issues, and for businesses that have large machinery or a lot of expensive equipment, on-site insurance will be essential to the success and longevity of your company.
In this day and age, health and safety requirements are stricter than ever and for good reason. For a business, the benefits of keeping a good standard of health and safety will contribute substantially to the success of the company as a whole, and the reasons listed above show that it could even increase profits. The safety of your employees and customers should always be a top priority, but it’s important to remember the advantages of good health and safety from a business standpoint too.