Improving Safety Culture in the Workplace

In business, there are always ways that safety culture can be developed and improved. There is a multitude of ways we can go about this, these are:

Lead by example

To improve your current safety culture, you must always lead by example; following all current safety policies will help engage employees and encourage them to follow suit. The one way in which that causes a decline in safety culture is when management don’t follow safety culture, this then leads to employees asking themselves why do I have to do this when management aren’t doing it?

Businesses with strong health and safety cultures understand that accidents/incidents could happen at any time, this therefore means they already have robust systems in place to deal with them when they happen. With these systems, they also have a robust system in place for reporting them internally while have persons trained and competent to investigate their root causes. The most important bit by far though, is that they learn from the accidents/incidents that take place!

Have a positive reporting process

Having a positive reporting process for all accidents/incidents in the workplace is highly important which has a positive effect on a company’s safety culture. One way to have a positive reporting process is to develop an appraisal system to reward employees who report safety hazards or concerns. Within a company, it’s much easier to build/improve a positive safety culture when employees feel comfortable reporting concern, this way it can reduce the likelihood of accidents, incidents, and near misses occurring.

Businesses with positive safety culture are always trying to improve, this way they can have the best system in place for safety management. The less accident’s, incidents, or near misses you have the safer your employees feel!

Provide training

As an employer, we have a duty to ensure that all employees are trained and competent in the work they are carrying out. Even though they are trained and competent it’s always good to upskill employees. This can include all sorts of training but especially safety training such as manual handling, working at height, asbestos awareness, and much more.

When an employee joins a business we must provide training on  the companies safety procedures to ensure they are aware of what to do if required. This could include training such as First Aid. Even once they are trained in safety procedures in the workplace, we should always provide refresher training to ensure their skills are up to date etc. An example of this is people who work within the RNLI, they must train frequently to ensure their water rescue skills are up to date and to the highest standard. The training can be delivered in a classroom or online, however we as employers/managers must record the training that has taken place.

Engage with employees

Improving and maintaining a positive safety culture requires everyone’s commitment. This means that it’s good practise to involve employees, this way they feel that their employee matters which it should always do! All employees will have different opinions of the current safety culture and how it can progress. The way in which we can involve persons is through team meetings, surveys or just general conversations with managers. If idea’s are noted, this is where everyone can discuss further, this doesn’t have to be everyone. It could just be a few persons from each department within the business.

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