Therefore, as the manager of a new business or one that is expanding to new territories, you will have to delve into the often complex and dynamic labyrinth that is safety compliance. You will as well have to keep up with the increasing number of rules and safety regulations, each new year.
Fear not, however, for in this article we shall look at the five most common safety compliance issues that new businesses face and later how to overcome them to help you prevent incidents that could potentially cost your starting business money and months of lost productivity.
5 Safety Compliance Challenges New Employers Face When Starting Out
CHALLENGE #1 - Identifying Risks and Hazards
In a sense, then, this means that a business that does not effectively manage to identify risks early enough in its initiation, runs a risk of staying caught in a perpetual loop of playing catch-up to safety protocols, its own and regulatory bodies. Which is costly, time consuming and a dangerous way to operate.
CHALLENGE #2 - Investigating Workplace Incidents
In most instances, such a conclusion might be the correct assumption. But to make sure a similar incident does not occur again; you would have to paint the full picture of how an incident really happened by conducting a thorough investigation.
However, as new businesses, without prior tracking information of hazards and near-misses along with previous incidents and injuries, safety investigations become difficult since such systems are often still nonexistent at the start.
CHALLENGE #3 - Lack of Knowledge on Safety Laws and Regulations
The danger, however, is this creates a knowledge gap that may lead to non-compliance whose consequences can be quite fatal for your employees and business.
CHALLENGE #4 - Poor Communication Between Roles
Without an effective safety management system in place to streamline communication within an organisation, safety procedures between different departments could clash in approach. Such scenarios are common in new businesses and can have an extremely detrimental impact on not just the health, safety, and environment management operations but also business performance.
CHALLENGE #5 - Lack of Employee Training
The challenges for new businesses here usually range anywhere from acquiring the services of proficient health and safety personnel as trainers, to documenting and updating training sessions. Adopting and providing for new regulatory changes within the workplace, is another challenging task managers face. For it is on employers to provide their workers with training on personal protective equipment, specific machinery or equipment, their workplace's emergency action plan, etc.
Having explored some of the most common disruptions new business owners face in safety compliance, we shall now share a few steps on how to bring such situations under control.
5 Simple Steps to Help New Businesses Maintain Safety Compliance
STEP I: Set Rules That Match Regulatory Standards
The more ideal approach, however, would be for said safety handbooks to match the regulatory standards your business legally has to meet. By aligning your own safety regulations and standards with those of the regulatory agencies that your organisation must answer to, you will not have to worry about those very agencies finding violations since meeting your own standards and theirs will be the same. While enforcing those rules, of course presents other issues, setting those standards is always a good place to start.
STEP II: Invest in Early and Regular Training
A significant amount of both time and money must be devoted to training employees the right way with competent safety professionals. The reason is simple: employees require consistent reinforcement in both the company's rules and regulatory standards, which are always prone to regular updates and changes. Therefore, the more training you give your workers, the less likely they are to make mistakes and the more likely they will be to function as required when dealing with incidents or meeting compliance regulations.
STEP III: Maintain Safety Records
However, adopting a safety management system that can be used on mobile phones and other handheld devices can upgrade the experience of maintaining records to a practice that can be conducted out on-the-go. Whether online or offline employees can update safety records if they are connected to the system.
STEP IV: Investigate All Incidents
Even if it is not mandatory, new business owners should make it a common safety practice to thoroughly investigate every close call, near miss and accident, whether they result in an injury or not. The more you investigate safety incidents, the more information you will have at your disposal to help you spot the root causes of previously unseen safety and compliance issues.
STEP V: Get Outside Help with Compliance Issues
However, new business owners should be intentional about how they adopt safety software solutions. They should devote time in customising, maintaining, and enforcing that safety management program to achieve optimum effectiveness in preventing future incidents.
If you're starting or buying a business and are keen on learning more about how to invest in and prioritise workplace safety and compliance today, give us a call!
Coyle-Group can help your organisation with the arrangement of all documentation necessary for safety personnel recruitment and provide additional top-class compliance consultancy services.
Contact us today for a free consultation!