Improving Health and Safety Standards Through Training and Education
The Main Purpose of Health and Safety Training is Sometimes Forgotten
Health and safety training is not only concerned with individuals passing exams and obtaining a piece of paper. Quite often the actual primary purpose of health and safety training - to improve safety standards and prevent accidents in the workplace - can be overlooked. Time and again, health and safety courses and qualifications are viewed as things which need to be done simply to obtain a piece of paper and satisfy legal requirements. Once they have passed, they can forget about it and carry on as before.
In actual fact, health and safety training should be viewed as a continual process for improving safety standards within an organisation. Not only is it essential for preventing accidents, injuries and illnesses to employees and members of the public nearby, but it is often forgotten that a safe place of work will often result in other benefits for the company.
The Effect of Management's Attitude Towards Safety
For instance, employees who feel that management do not take their health and safety seriously will also believe, probably correctly, that profits are put before them in the list of priorities. As a result they will be demotivated and in all likelihood be actively searching for another job at a company which treats its workers better. This can cause disruption to the business from high staff turnover, not to mention more time lost for worker absence through sickness or ill-health, both of which will, ironically, reduce profits.
The fact that health and safety training requires money to be spent and employees to have time away from the workplace is the cause of much bitterness towards the topic by the vast majority of business owners. They see health and safety requirements as a burden and an inconvenience which has to be endured such as paying tax. Many fail to see further than the short term financial and time commitments to realise how improving health and safety standards and creating a positive health and safety culture within their business can significantly increase profit levels. Employees who feel safe, respected and cared about will subsequently want to remain working for the business for the foreseeable future, and will as a result want it to be successful and flourish. Rather than sitting there hoping they don't get injured or fall ill (or worse), and wanting to get out of the company as soon as possible, employees who actually want the company to succeed will work much harder to try and achieve it as they want to stay.
Health and Safety Can Be Good for Both People and Profits
So not only does improving health and safety standards in a business satisfy regulatory requirements, it can also provide a fantastic return on investment and significantly improve the future profitability and service levels of the organisation. Rather than being a disruption and inconvenience which drains time and money, health and safety training and the subsequent safer place of work and increased motivation felt by staff can provide a tremendous boost to the company.