Employees and employers alike deserve to feel safe and secure at work.
It is, after all, where we spend a solid half of our lives. But many modern workplaces are far from the safe havens they should be in an ideal world. With the right approach, however, they can become a safe workplace.
To make your workplace as safe as possible, it’s going to require a three-pronged attack focusing on your facilities, workplace hygiene and the wellbeing of your staff.
Which facilities you’ll need to provide to ensure a safe workplace might vary. For example, there are going to be different facilities required at a warehouse than at an office. However, at a bare minimum, all workplaces should include toilet facilities, clean drinking water, a place to keep clothing and somewhere to rest and consume food.
All facilities should also be well maintained and protected as otherwise, accidents can happen and employees might be looking to get the personal injury solicitors involved. If this happens it can not only damage your reputation and lead to an expensive lawsuit but will also make that employee feel like a pariah at work. So it’s best to ensure it never can happen in the first place.
The COVID pandemic has taught us all a thing or two about hygiene. While it has always been vital for hospitals to maintain strict hygiene rules, hand sanitisers are now commonplace in all working environments – from supermarkets to schools. Good hygiene practice in the workplace has never been more important and is not just about keeping surfaces spotless and free of germs.
Good hygiene means allowing employees time off when they’re ill to prevent the rest of the workforce from becoming infected. It means setting procedures and expectations that are upheld by everyone in the company. It also means creating designated areas for eating and drinking to stop cross-contamination of bacteria and ensuring that waste bins are emptied and cleaned regularly.
Mental health has been something of a hot topic in the wake of the pandemic and subsequent lockdowns. We are starting to realise that it’s not just how our employees appear to be that matters but how they really feel. Senior HR leaders are starting to place wellbeing as a top priority.
Physical wellbeing is, of course, one part of the puzzle and is a deceptively varied subject. It means ensuring employees are well-rested, healthy and are eating and exercising properly. Career and financial wellbeing also fall into this bracket and are perhaps a little harder to figure out. Social and emotional wellbeing, however, are the two parts of the equation that HR will already be well-schooled in.