Occupational health and safety are the laws, standards, and programs that are aimed at making the workplace better for works, along with co-workers, family members, customers, and other stakeholders.
It relates to the health, safety and welfare in the workplace. It addresses many workplace hazards such as chemicals, biological and pharmaceutical agents, accidents and ergonomic issues.
Why Is Occupational Health And Safety Important?
- Demonstrates social responsibility
- Enhances employee’s commitment to the company
- Generates a healthy workplace which leads to higher work competencies and efficiency
- Protects and builds the brand, which is what the rest of the world thinks about your company
- Decreases business disruption.
What Are The Benefits?
1. Improved workplace process efficiency
With a written occupational health and safety management system, the workplace processes that guide most any business will be much smoother.
Understanding that your company operates under the guiding principles of a health and safety management system makes decision making much easier. The efficiencies associated with this health and safety will be seen across the whole organization and there will not be much back and forth on what should have been done in the case of an emergency or accident.
2. Less risk of legal actions
In some unfortunate situations when an employee is involved in an accident at work, the occupational health and safety management system will lead the procedure as to what happens with respect to the employee and employer.
If a management system is not in place, there will be too much vagueness and lack of clarity which can then lead to lawyer/attorney involvement. This is not a situation where any employer or employee wants to willingly be involved. It can become a combative situation and damage the relationship between employer and employee.
3. Reduced illness and injuries in the workplace
Health and safety management systems direct us on how to operate with respect to illnesses and injuries in the workplace. Some companies have written into their workplace health and safety management system that employees that are sick should say home so as to not infect other employees. If a bad virus begins to spread a cubicle environment, it can lead to many man hours of lost work leading to decreased efficiency, especially in the colder months.
For injuries, the standards for workplace safety have significantly improved. The detail and principles do not leave anything to chance. Whether it be the operating procedures in a chemical plant to holding the railing as you walk up and down stairs to wearing the appropriate shoes in winter months to avoid falling, each of these will prevent more accidents.
4. Positive workplace culture
It is the obligation of the company to ensure that the employee will go home the same way they arrived. If an employee knows that their employer is striving to provide the safest workplace environment, the employee will love to come to work and perform at a very high level.
5. Improved brand reputation
‘What can improve brand loyalty and a business’s performance?’ says David Rowland, Head of Marketing at Effective Software. ‘That’s easy. More stringent health and safety policies. Doing this one thing, that remember you should be doing anyway, will make your employees happier, will increase their productivity, and will make your shareholders and consumers happier. It really is a no-brainer’.
Companies are typically judged and rated by governing bodies such as OSHA, and these results are published yearly. Many people read these and if your company is ranking high on the list year after year, its reputation will soar and could potentially lead to improved financial results and an increased talent pool interested in your company.
Occupational health and safety is extremely important to every company. There are many benefits including improved brand reputation, reduced illness and injury and improved workplace business processes.