If you are, or ever were, a fan of playing video games, then you may understand the thrill of jumping over buildings, tumbling down mountains, falling off of cliffs, and driving cars at high speeds through pedestrian-filled sidewalks with no consequences in the digital world.
However, as someone in the business world, you know that workplace injuries and fatalities are real events that can't be eradicated by just pushing a button to restart the game or go back to level one.
And, not only do these injuries effect your employees, they affect your business' bottom line. According to Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety, U.S. businesses spend more than $1 billion a week on the most disabling workplace injuries.
Although you can't prevent every injury from happening (because, let's face it, we are all human and accidents do happen), you can take proactive measures to lessen the risk of work-related injury or death. One of the most effective steps you can take is to conduct thorough on-the-job safety training. You may be thinking, "thanks for the 'hot tip,' Captain Obvious, but I don't need safety training because my employees work behind a desk--not on an oil rig!" However, it's important to note that this type of training should be implemented in every workplace--not just the most dangerous.
To help you understand the value of this type of program, here are seven advantages of implementing safety training:
1. Maintaining Compliance with the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA)
Employers are required to implement safe work practices, according to OSHA. Employers must provide a safe workplace that removes harmful hazards and risks from all areas that can cause injury to employees. Not having a safety training program in place could result in stiff fines.
2. Lower Workers’ Compensation Insurance Costs
Workers' compensation costs for injuries and illnesses amount to billions of dollars each year. Safety training will help to reduce these costs and minimize injury claims. A study conducted by California’s Division of Occupational Safety and Health in 2012, found that organizations that participated in workplace safety programs saved approximately $355,000 in injury claims and compensation.
3. Safe Work Practices Help Businesses Stay Profitable
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, companies with safety and health training saw improvements in their organization’s profitability.
4. Lower Associated Costs with Return-to-Work Programs
Return-to-work programs help to retain injured, disabled, or temporarily impaired employees. The goal of these programs is to have them return to work at full capacity as soon as it is medically possible. Associated costs are lowered when safe work practices are followed because employees are able to continue their jobs at normal capacity, instead of decreasing capacity to accommodate their recuperation from injury. These impositions cost the company more money for the time lost and slower productivity. Decreased capacity means less productivity, which ultimately means higher costs and less revenue for your company.
5. Increased Productivity and Increased Revenue
Safety training programs lead to increased productivity. Businesses find that investing in safety training programs yields higher financial returns because their employees are safe, can continue working at normal capacity, and they aren’t spending company resources on injury claims or workers' compensation costs.
6. Less Administrative Burden
When an incident occurs, supervisors, management, and human resources staff spend additional unanticipated time completing forms and paperwork related to the work injury or illness. Fewer injuries means less time spent on administrative tasks and more time spent being productive.
7. Reduced Costs for New Machinery, Materials, and Property
Without safety training programs, employees could accidentally damage production tools, machines, materials, or even the facility. Providing a safety training program can lessen the costs for repair and maintenance.
Workplace safety is critical for the health of your employees and the bottom line of your business, so if you haven’t already, consider the positive impact that comprehensive safety training could have on your business.