Studying workplace safety and applying it to your place of employment helps avoid injury and keep workers happy and healthy. Injuries aren’t always what you’d expect and not all are catastrophic, but the result is lost work days and workers suffering unnecessarily. A solid workplace safety plan avoids injuries and increases a company’s bottom line while also protecting workers’ health.
A worker is hurt about every seven seconds. The result is around 104,000,000 lost days of productive work each year. The average median income in the United States is $57,617 per year according to the 2017 Census. Assuming most workers put in a 40-hour week with about three weeks of vacation, that translates to around $235 per day. Just one day of lost work costs your company money.
On top of that, if an injury occurs at work, your company may be responsible for medical costs, which can add up. You’ll lose both productivity and additional money to help the employee get back to 100 percent.
Types of Injuries
When you think about workplace injuries, you likely think about a construction worker falling from a rooftop or someone getting hurt on machinery. However, there are many types of work injuries that run that gamut from carpal tunnel to choking hazards from eating your lunch too quickly. Only 25 percent of injuries are due to contact with objects and equipment.
In addition to making sure your workplace is safe every day, think about long-term safety concerns. Studies show that commuting to and from work more than 10 miles increases cholesterol and blood sugar. If you commute by train or bus, the results are even worse since you are also exposed to the illness of others and have increased stress dealing with their eccentricities. One solution is employees working remotely at least part of the time.
Indoor air quality is also a concern both for employees and employers. Not only are viruses spread more easily in an enclosed space, but without adequate sun and fresh air, workers may feel stifled. A few things you can do include installing more windows, offering breaks where people can get outside and adding living plants to your interior. Air filters also help clean and freshen the air.
Many factors go into creating happy employees. Work-life balance is of utmost importance, so employees should get enough days off to enjoy family events and attend important events with their children, such as going on a school field trip.
While at work, employees should trust that you’ll put their health first and know that if there is a serious health risk that you’ll step in and fix the problem. A happy, well-rounded employee is more likely to stay with a company for years, reducing the high cost of turnover and the aggravation of retraining a new worker.
Look Around You
More than likely, your workplace follows basic OSHA standards, but take the time to look around and start changing one unhealthy thing at a time. Do employees sit hunched over their desks all day? Add flexible desks so they can sit or stand. There are many small, inexpensive changes that employers and employees both can make to improve the overall quality of life at work.
This is a sponsored post by Katherman, Briggs & Greenberg LLP. The original post was published here.