Smiles in Safety: 10 Ways to Improve Workplace Safety for Your Entire Team

workplace safety

Workers compensation claims cost businesses a pretty penny each year. In fact, a $50,000 claim costs companies up to $127,000 in indirect costs. 

Employees want to be in a safe work environment, and employers want the same. But it’s easy for a worker to slip on a stray piece of paper or for an upturned rug to turn into a broken arm. 

That’s why we’ve compiled a list of quick, simple solutions that are guaranteed to reduce the risk of injury at work. Let’s roll up our sleeves and turn that rug the right way.

Here are ten super quick, effective solutions.  

10 Tips for a Safe Work Environment

Super simple and super effective ways to stay safe at work? Yes, please.

We have ten of them right here. 

1. Keep It Clean

Slips and falls are the leading cause of emergency room visits. Any wise employer makes it a point to reduce the chance of slips. 

An easy way to do this is to keep the workplace clean. Eliminate clutter in aisleways and potential slipping hazards. Make your standards of cleanliness clear to employees and enforce those expectations. 

In addition to minimizing the chance of falls, cleanliness also reduces the spread of germs. 

2. Ask for Employee Input

Sometimes, it’s difficult for supervisors to think about work from an employee’s perspective. 

By asking employees about any foreseeable hazards, managers prevent future injuries. An easy way to do this is to create an anonymous box where employees submit any information about possible threats. 

3. Consider Ergonomics and Adjustable Technology

Have you ever had a position that required constant bending? Or maybe you’ve had a job where you sit all day? 

Back pain plagues Americans, and recent studies demonstrate the importance of ergonomics in the workplace. Making simple adjustments in this area enhances workers’ health and comfort levels. 

To do this, consider purchasing adjustable desks, ergonomic chairs or signs that remind workers of proper sitting, standing, or lifting procedures. 

4. Keep Equipment Updated

As proven through the high numbers of fatalities and injuries in sectors like construction, large equipment comes with risks. 

For that reason, large pieces of equipment should be regularly checked and maintained—even if it’s costly. 

Employers should also place machinery in well-lighted areas to minimize the risk of injury. 

5. Make Checklists

Checklists are an excellent way to ensure you’re doing everything possible to keep the workplace safe. 

Make a checklist to inspect the building prior to winter and another prior to the summer months. This lets employers prepare for potential situations resulting from all seasons, such as blizzards or tornadoes. 

In addition, create checklists for employees to review daily. Doing so makes it easy for workers and managers to keep everything clean, orderly and sanitary.  

6. Have a Healthy Call-Off Procedure

We’ve all seen it. One employee comes into work with the flu. Throughout the next few weeks, call offs skyrocket. 

It’s understandable employers have specific call-off procedures. However, those procedures shouldn’t make workers feel as if they have to come to work ill. 

Such an environment decreases worker morale, increases call offs and reduces workplace productivity. Instead, have a clear policy and recording process. 

To help, consider changing the policy to address “personal days” instead of “sick days” and contemplate paid time off. In fact, providing paid time off reduces turnover, increases worker happiness and ups production. 

7. Incorporate Training

All companies have training, but it’s what is included in that training that really matters. 

Show employees how to be proactive about safety at work. Explain the importance of healthy practices, such as sitting correctly in computer chairs. 

However, workers should also understand exactly what to do in emergency situations. Share safety protocols for situations pertaining to your sector. This educational training saves lives. 

In addition to providing training, corporations should encourage keeping skills current through regular professional development or training programs. 

8. Add Ladders and Mirrors

Some of us just can’t reach that tool we need on the top shelf. And if there is no step stool within sight, most employees will use whatever is nearby as a substitute. 

A simple way to stop this from happening is to purchase small step ladders and place them throughout the building. 

In high-traffic areas, convex mirrors are also invaluable, especially for fast-paced environments. In areas where workers are moving quickly and likely to collide into each other, place mirrors. 

That way, it’s easy for employees to glance up before turning the corner. 

Both are simple, inexpensive and effective. 

9. Don’t Forget Mental Health

A truly healthy environment addresses workers’ physical and mental well-being. 

Luckily, there are many ways to encourage healthy mentalities.

Provide employees with stress balls for their offices. It gives them something to do while they think and lets individuals calm down. 

In addition, provide fun or creative activities for breaks. Games, painting options, areas for yoga and more are all excellent options that boost energy levels.

10. Employee-Proof the Building

Children aren’t the only ones who need protective measures; adults do, too.

Add carpet grippers and corner covers throughout the office, store or work area. 

Grippers stop carpets from moving around and grip flooring minimizes slippage, especially in environments where there is moisture or liquids on the floor. 

Corner covers are helpful in work environments that have many tables and counters, which employees and customers may catch themselves on when rounding corners. 

Add reflectors to any areas that can’t be addressed directly to warn employees of potential hazards. 

Small steps like these show employees that they are valued and that supervisors care about their health. 

Healthy is Happy

Creating a safe work environment doesn’t have to be expensive, time-consuming or an added burden. If it’s done correctly, it creates a positive environment where employees feel valued and welcomed. 

But happiness isn’t limited to the confines of the workplace. Spread positivity and encourage global health by going paperless at work. 

Not convinced it’s a good idea? Read our article to find out just how much it can help your company. 

In the meantime, begin practicing our 10 tips and watch as the work environment gleams with energy.