Tracking details of hazards, near misses, and injuries in the workplace has substantial advantages. The first, and most obvious reason for tracking safety incidents and observations is to prevent ourselves, and other team members, from getting injured. Recording details of who was injured, specifically where the incident occurred, what caused the employee harm, and why it happened, can help you identify the root cause. After the root cause of the incident is established, you will then be able to either eliminate the hazard or put a safeguard in place. Furthermore, by analyzing the provided data, you can investigate trends such as ergonomic, tooling, and environmental within departments and job titles.
Eliminating hazards in the workplace can also help your organization financially. Worker’s Compensation claims and settlements are extremely damaging. The average employee settlement is $20,000. Between indirect and direct costs, employers will end up paying approximately $120,000 per workplace injury.
Furthermore, growing a positive safety climate will have an impact on team members’ morale. If team members feel safe at work, comfortable reporting hazards and injuries, and trusting in management to not only hear safety concerns, but to act on their feedback, they will feel valued and respected.
Creating an effective safety team can assist management in an “all hands-on deck” approach. An example of this approach would be to have your safety teams and management collectively participate in Gemba walks. A Gemba walk creates a scheduled time for you and your team to specifically look for safety risks outside of your normal routine and normal working areas. During a Gemba walk, the team should be thoroughly auditing all work locations, including non-routine work areas, as well as externally around your facility. The more eyes and ears identifying hazards, and the more staff included to resolve these observations, the less likely injuries will occur.
PaperWorks significantly emphasizes the importance of team member safety, and continuously strives to create an inclusive, positive safety climate. Each PaperWorks facility has an identified EH&S department with robust policies, procedures, and reporting. All team members at PaperWorks receive a new hire safety orientation with continuous safety training throughout their employment. We have made safety part of our company culture by making it one of our core values, prioritizing the responsibility we have to look out for one another. One easy way your company can prevent team members from getting injured is to report any hazards, near misses, or injuries that you may see or experience. By analyzing and responding to these reports, you will be able to boost overall wellbeing and create a safer working environment.