Ensuring health and safety in the workplace is a team effort—one that is made easier as more people become engaged. But as a recognised leader in your organisation, you have more responsibility than others.
You are a decision-maker tasked with ensuring organisation-wide adherence to company policies, and that includes health and safety. Without the overarching guidance from you and your fellow decision-makers, your organisation risks falling apart at the seams. Undeniably, many recent high-profile safety cases are rooted in negligent leadership.
Under UK law, employers and directors can be held personally liable for failing to fulfil their duties of ensuring workplace health and safety. By taking these simple steps, you can lessen your liability and help guarantee your employees’ safety.
• Write an organisation-wide health and safety policy. You and your fellow leaders should chart the course for effective health and safety management—do this by writing a health and safety policy that acknowledges all of the organisation’s significant risks. The policy should assign responsibilities, ensure leaders understand the key issues involved and outline how to communicate health and safety issues.
• Deliver health and safety through effective management. Delivering health and safety depends on effective management—by implementing robust management systems, you can help guarantee that risks are dealt with sensibly. Disseminate competent health and safety advice, carry out risk assessments and involve employees in decisions that affect their health and safety.
• Monitor health and safety at all times. Monitoring and reporting are vital to establishing a consistent health and safety culture in the workplace. Your management systems should allow for both specific, incident-generated reports in addition to routine assessments. Be sure to conduct periodic audits of your management structures, the impact on health and safety from changes such as new procedures, and your strategies for tweaking procedures due to legislative developments.
• Review health and safety throughout the year. A yearly, high-level review of health and safety performance is essential to your organisation’s survival. It helps you discern whether appropriate health and safety measures have been adopted across the company. Your review process should examine whether the health and safety policy reflects your organisation’s current needs, the effectiveness of health and safety reporting, and any health and safety shortcomings and strategies for fixing them.
You and your fellow leaders’ actions set the tone for the entire organisation. By modelling a serious devotion to workplace health and safety, you can help reduce accidents and illnesses and consequently lower operating costs. Trust the professionals at Bollington Risk Management for comprehensive health and safety guidance on all of the above.