Safety Pays! How Businesses Can Save Their Bottom Line

by Caitlin Harwood on June 16, 2014 · 0 comments

The safest workplaces have a management team that’s dedicated to identifying and correcting hazards. They know that safety measures and training are worth every penny. Preventable workplace injuries and deaths can be devastating − not just to workers and families, but also to a company’s bottom line. Occupational injuries and illness cost American businesses more than $53 billion a year, or over $1 billion a week, in workers’ compensation costs alone.

The best way to keep workers safe and protect your business is to learn how to find and fix hazards before anyone gets hurt. If you own a small business, the new Hazard Identification Training Tool from OSHA could help you do just that. The tool is an educational game where users can navigate between scenarios in the manufacturing and construction industries to practice identifying and correcting hazards that could cost your workers and your business big.

In the manufacturing scenario, users can play from the perspective of either a business owner or an employee as they learn to identify realistic, common hazards and address them with practical and effective solutions. In the construction scenario, players can observe the work site for common hazards like the “Focus Four” – falls, electrocutions, struck-bys and caught-betweens – by conducting visual inspections and interacting with workers.

Knowing how to identify hazards in your workplace is a critical step towards safety and health management. The tool explains the five key components of the hazard identification process:

  • collecting information
  • observing the workplace
  • investigating incidents
  • encouraging workers to participate
  • prioritizing hazards
  • Studies have also shown that there is a direct correlation between a company’s performance in safety and its productivity and profits. In fact, for every dollar spent on an injury and illness prevention program, an employer can expect up to six times in returns on the investment!

    In the end, practicing with this tool could save time, money, and most importantly, lives. That’s why OSHA is excited to be able to provide this new compliance assistance tool to help employers take control of their workplaces and protect workers.

    Try it yourself and find out why safety pays!

    Caitlin Harwood is a Presidential Management Fellow at the Labor Department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

     

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