There are a lot of moral and personal reasons why you should commit to a stringent safety regime. As a person who cares about the health and happiness of your employees, it’s the right thing to do. Accidents can cause serious, life-changing injuries, not to mention the danger that someone would lose their life in a terrible accident.
However, you are still running a business. You think in terms of profit, and you communicate with investors, lenders and fellow executives in the language of the bottom line.
Luckily, there isn’t any real tension between morality and money matters on this subject. Safety is good ethics … it’s also good business.
Investing in safety is like buying insurance. It seems like an expenditure while you’re paying the bills, but it avoids large payouts in the future. It also helps foster a positive business environment that leads to higher productivity, higher retention rates and higher levels of worker satisfaction.
Here are some of the ways a strong set of safety policies adds to your bottom line:
Lower Legal/Regulatory Risk
Lax safety invites legal trouble. A major accident can lead to a lawsuit; an expensive proposition, even if you are able to fight it off successfully. Also, poor safety procedures can lead to fines and other government intervention.
Rigorous safety procedures can prevent these expensive headaches.
Fewer Work Stoppages
Accidents don’t only invite lawsuits and regulatory action. They interrupt production. Even a minor incident (one that creates no real injury or property damage) can shut down a workstation for a period of time. They can also require expensive cleanups.
Astringent safety policies avoid these costly shutdowns.
Fewer Sick Days
A serious accident can put an employee out for a sustained period of time. That deprives you of a highly trained worker, forcing you to do without them entirely or making you replace them with a less-productive temp.
Even without an injury, unsafe workplaces can take a toll on employees. Little ailments build up, leading to increased sick days. Meanwhile, even healthy workers tend to take additional time off in an attempt to avoid their unsafe workspace as much as possible.
When a workplace operates at less than ideal safety levels, employees make up for the additional danger by performing their work more carefully. In practice, that means they go slower, cutting into efficiency and overall output.
A safe workplace is a confident workplace. Comfortable in the knowledge they are protected from serious injury, workers are free to work at the optimal levels of efficiency.
Beyond the physical confidence that comes with a comfortable level of safety, employees just feel better in a safe environment. An unsafe workplace fostered complaints and ill feeling.
Conversely, safe workers are free to enjoy the workplace and their place in it. This leads to better retention, improved employee satisfaction and, ultimately, higher levels of productivity.
Employees will tolerate an unsafe workplace … at least they will as long as they don’t have any other options. However, if another opportunity arises, they will quickly jump ship.
Allowing an unsafe situation to fester invites the departure of your top talent. You end up settling for underperforming employees (those who don’t have other options), raising salaries to tamp down turnover, or paying for constant recruitment and training.
The first step to a safe, profitable work environment: hiring the right people. Competent, dedicated workers automatically raise the safety profile of your company. DHR is dedicated to providing just that level of professionalism. Contact DHR today to learn what they can do to improve your safety situation.