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Why competency and good health and safety management go hand in hand

24-03-2014

Photo shows workers in front of a graphCompetency is something which employers are looking for in industries of every kind. Before searching for flair, employers need to know that a candidate has precisely what it takes to take care of each part of a job effectively and efficiently.

One area in which competency is particularly important is health and safety. In recent years, the legal requirements surrounding health and safety have become a good deal stricter, pushing companies to think carefully about the safety of environments they create.

Here, we take a look at the importance of competency when it comes to health and safety management.

Meeting legal requirements

The first goal to meet when considering health and safety in the workplace is a legal one. Dependent on your industry, there is sure to be a list of guidelines and requirements which clearly state the practices, equipment and level of training which your company is responsible for. The legal requirements surrounding health and safety are often changing and companies need to be sure that they are up to date at all times.

Throughout management, it is essential that employees at a company are made aware of their responsibilities in this respect. Not only do managers need to ensure that all members of staff are provided with the necessary and correct level of training, but they are also responsible for the provision of ergonomic personal protective equipment.

Competency in the legality of health and safety is something which is sought after by all kinds of companies.

Building and maintaining relationships with staff

Providing employees with the correct equipment and training is not just a matter of staying inside the law. It is also a process through which a company can build and maintain a strong and meaningful relationship with its staff members.

Health and safety is essentially a matter of welfare. It's important for staff to feel that a company is not merely covering its own back, but is genuinely concerned for its employees' safety. Meeting legal requirements is the first step to take but it is by going above and beyond these standards that companies are able to manifest their personal investment in their workforce.

Ergonomic personal protective equipment is something worth extra consideration. Not only can special equipment be more comfortable for employees, but it can help to improve efficiency and productivity.

When handled carelessly, health and safety measures can make work sluggish. It's not unheard of for safety procedures to slow down the working day and for injuries to actually be sustained by the improper use of safety equipment. Good health and safety management should see the workplace turned into an environment which is not only a good deal safer, but considerably more productive, too.

An investment in the health and safety of your employees is a great way for companies to reach out to staff and to establish a relationship which is built on trust.

Accidents are expensive

There may be an extensive range of insurance policies out there which are designed to protect workers and employers in the event of an accident, but there's no getting around the reality that accidents are costly to all involved.

Just as it's the job of a good employee to look out for ways in which to avoid costs across the board, health and safety is to be considered a matter of significant financial importance. If your workplace is able to remain accident-free throughout the year, you can consider this to be a financial success.

If an employee is side-lined as a result of an injury sustained at work, it's impossible to over-state the troubles which a company can face when it comes to replacing them on a temporary basis. Regardless of your line of work, a company works best when it is being run by experienced and loyal members of staff. Consider health and safety to be your lifeline in this respect. Investing in safety is investing in your company's ability to continue at its best for time to come.

Health and safety records help form reputations

Competency requires staff members to do all they can to improve and maintain the reputation of a company. It's therefore worthwhile for companies to recognise the implications that its health and safety record can have on its reputation.

A poor record in health and safety can be particularly troublesome when the time comes for a company to recruit. Prospective staff members will be searching for an employer who cares, and a poor track record when it comes to health and safety can therefore do a company a disservice.

Looking after your staff not only means good things for today's productivity, but it also helps to promote your company in the eyes of future employees. Health and safety has surely become one of the most important aspects of business today.

Author Bio: Tony Skelton is the founder of Intersafety Ltd, a leading Independent UK supplier of health and safety PPE equipment for the workplace. In his spare time he works as a School Governor and cheering on his favourite rugby, football and cricket teams.

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