When businesses invest in worker safety, they protect their bottom line as well. The potential savings is tremendous. According to research conducted by J. Paul Leigh, a Professor of Public Health Sciences at the University of California – Davis, the national annual price tag of occupational injuries and illnesses is estimated at $250 billion. He recommends expanded prevention measures to reduce harm to workers and cost to employers. (If you want to learn more about the study, click here.)
The most effective safety campaigns for the workplace according to the National Safety Council generate employee excitement through regular communication, proactive safety activities, and recognition. When you’re ready to boost safety awareness among your employees, here are a few tips:
Consider which safety issues matter most for your employees. The 2012 Liberty Mutual Workplace Safety Indexranks “overexertion” (e.g. excessive lifting, pushing, carrying) as the leading cause of disabling injuries. Other common safety hot buttons include falls, being struck by an object, and repetitive motion (repeated stress and strain). Imprinted products can be customized with safety pointers targeting a specific workplace situation. A mouse pad with ergonomic tips works well for desk-bound employees, who spend hours inputting computer data. A cap with the slogan, “Heads Up for Safety,” can remind production floor workers to beware overhead dangers.
Select products that function for safety. For example, keep employees highly visible when they work around machinery or vehicles by outfitting them in apparel and headwear in neon safety colors and reflective striping. Flashlights prove valuable for nighttime workers or those in dimly lit environments. Jumper cables/auto safety kits keep drivers in good shape on the road. Think also of products that aid wellness. Stainless steel water bottles hydrate outdoor laborers to mitigate the risk of overheating. Sun block reduces the risk of skin cancer.
Finally, keep your team motivated. Provide a tiered menu of safety incentives that gain the recipient peer recognition. These rewards can range from small but useful items such as quality key chains or multifunction tools to embroidered jackets designating “Leaders in Safety” to high-level awards such as a fine Swiss-made watch for those whose efforts set records for an injury-free workplace.
To get started improving safety at your company, please call or email us. We’ll share examples of programs we’ve created for others that proved effective and share ideas for a campaign customized specifically for your workplace.