There were 4,836 workplace deaths in 2015, according to the latest data from OSHA. And approximately one in five of those fatal accidents took place…
Workplace safety is more than a priority for the manufacturing industry; it’s imperative that companies recognize the value in the integral relationship between operations efficiency and safety. Implementing real time internal communications means manufacturing companies never have to choose between efficient operations and workforce safety with manifold benefits.
When working conditions reflect––or exceed––safety best practices, your workforce feels safe and can focus on the tasks at hand without having to compensate for any safety gaps in the work environment. If working conditions are routinely unsafe, employees have to spend time finding workarounds to ensure their own safety, which makes their jobs harder to do. This directly affects performance, and productivity naturally suffers.
Building a culture of safety, where zero injuries is the goal, is attainable with the right internal communications tools. Here are seven ways to use a group messaging app to improve manufacturing operations to ensure workplace safety.
When it comes to safety, practicing what you preach can’t be overstated. A company’s safety standards should reflect the industry’s best practices and be communicated to employees by leadership. Take the opportunity to model safety best practices in a way that is highly visible and accessible for employees now and in the future.
Seeing is believing! Everyone has a different learning style, and video is an ideal medium to convey your workplace’s safety standards. One example is showing how to correctly wear safety eyewear, ensure the fit of hard hats, or other safety apparel.
With a group messaging app, important safety-related notices and documents can be centrally stored and updated easily. What’s more, documents can be accessed when your employees need them, whether on the plant floor or otherwise on-the-go. With a live communication feed, operation protocols can be instantly shared with your workforce. Tagging managers, team leads, or employees provides immediate notification so they know to review or check in, which is particularly necessary in the event of an emergency or crisis.
There are many ways to evaluate the retention of safety information. Polls can be set up and sent out to remind your workforce of recent safety policies or practices. Better yet, use a survey to garner feedback from your employees on any safety protocols that could be augmented or implemented.
This is an especially important aspect of creating a culture of safety as related to accountability. Make it clear that it’s everyone’s responsibility to ensure workplace safety. It also empowers employees to speak up in the event they observe unsafe working conditions or coworker behavior. Encourage employees to hold themselves and each other accountable, and reward them for doing so by posting recognition or offering incentives.
In line with other accountability measures, this is another quantifiable way to hold employees accountable for workplace safety. Initiated using a group messaging app, confirmation campaigns require recipients to acknowledge they have seen and read safety materials.
Use incidents as learning opportunities and invite employees to chime in on what they would do differently given a similar scenario by asking them to comment below the post. One example could be double checking the power is off when any maintenance is being performed that requires workers to be in close proximity to equipment. Another is removing safety hazards such as extra tools from a service platform.
Lack of adequate internal communication renders manufacturing operations inefficient–or worse, can compromise safety. It’s in the best interest of both the company and your workforce to focus on improving operations to ensure safety in the manufacturing workplace.