By Mike Marinan, Director of Member Services - Public Risk Underwriters of Florida, Inc.
Training employees on workplace safety is time and money well spent. An effective occupational safety and health training program can result in fewer injuries and illnesses, better morale, and lower workers’ compensation insurance premiums.
When I do training in the field I will emphasis that insurance at this level can be very expensive. Employee accidents can add to that expense and it is imperative that we do all we can to ensure that everybody goes home in the same condition that they came to work.
Accidents, depending on their severity can be life altering events and providing information as to workplace safety and training can prevent that.
The benefits of safety training in the workplace are numerous, providing benefits for the employer and most especially the employee who is most at risk. Public entities that are both big and small need to realize the positive impact it can have. As an employer, it is your responsibility to instruct your workers how to perform in a safe and healthy manner before they even start work. Safety training is an integral part of the employee orientation process, but it also requires regular “refresher” courses to maximize effectiveness. Not only because employee alertness goes down over time, but also because safety protocols change to keep up with changes in equipment, materials and roles within the organization.
Beyond the obvious reasons of best practice and responsibility – there are plenty of advantages to investing time and thought in a well-planned workplace safety training program. Here are a few:
1. It Will Reduce Accidents and Injuries
This may seem obvious, but one of the key benefits of safety training for employees is that it will reduce the number of incidents in the workplace, and probably outside the workplace as well. Workplace incidents can range from minor illnesses and injuries to life-threatening accidents.
Training is not guaranteed to eliminate all incidents, but it will put your employees in the best position to avoid them and reduce accidents and injuries to a minimum.
2. It Increases Employee Awareness
Safety training is invaluable to educate your employees on the various hazards in the workplace and how to manage them. Quality safety training will cover workplace hazards, how to identify them, how to address them, and how to avoid these hazards occurring in the first place.
3. It Will Help You to Retain Quality Employees
Finding, hiring and developing great employees can be costly to an organization, so it’s important to do all that you can to retain the quality employees. Investing in the safety of your employees and promoting this through training, shows your employees that you value them, a critical part of great hiring and retention strategies. Ensuring the safety of your employees can also prevent work related injury which could result in temporary or permanent absence from work.
4. It Can Make Your Employees More Productive
Effective safety training will help to increase productivity within your organization. Safety training can mean that there are less likely to be work-related accidents and illnesses, which can cause absences from work. Left unchecked these absences can impact an organizations productivity and damage performance.
5. Employees Will Be More Invested in Safety
Comprehensive safety training not only increases employee awareness and knowledge in this area, but also their investment in the process. Promotion of safety in the workplace can lead to employees taking individual responsibility to ensure that theirs is a safe place to work.
6. It Will Save You Money
Workplace accidents can be very costly, not just in terms of compensation, but also in lost productivity and direct costs. There are also indirect costs of accidents such as repairing damage to equipment, hiring and training replacement staff, administration and reporting of incidents and claims.
7. It Will Encourage Communication
One of the biggest barriers to safety in the workplace is a lack of communication. Often incidents occur because employees fail to notify their supervisor or colleagues about issues, problems, or hazards. Good safety training will educate employees about how to effectively communicate on these matters and empower employees to do so.
As a member of Preferred you have access to extensive resources that are offered to you at no additional cost. We have recently introduced the Preferred Virtual Training Academy. As soon as the environment normalizes, we will be able to provide in person training at your location. Target/Vector Solutions is the pre-eminent online training provider for public entities. Their platform offers training on more than 680 related topics. Training Network Now, an extensive online streaming video platform with over 700 related topics is another easy to use resource. Please do not hesitate to contact your Preferred Loss Control Consultant with questions or requests for additional information.
Mike Marinan, Director of Member Services - Public Risk Underwriters of Florida, Inc. - Mike has a degree in Industrial Safety Engineering and over 37 years experience in the Safety and Risk Management field. He has been employed by Public Risk Underwriters of Florida, Inc. for 19 years. He holds an RMPE designation, holds a General Lines 220 and 218 licenses, is an active member of Central Florida PRIMA, as well as an active member of ASSP and numerous related Safety and Health organizations. He was a Governor appointee to the Task Force on Workplace Safety