The Importance of Employee Safety in the Workplace
Employees should always feel safe and cared for at their workplace, with the assurance that any risks to their safety have been taken seriously. In fact, it is an employee’s right to working in an environment in which risks to their health and safety are properly controlled. Without paying proper attention to employee safety, employers risk their employees’ health, safety and contentment at their workplace.
Aside from employee wellbeing, proper employee safety management in the workplace is required by law. The UK Government outlines various responsibilities concerning employee safety in the workplace, as will be explained below.
From warehouses to offices, here is all employers need to know about employee safety in the workplace, including why it is important and tips for optimum safety.
Employee Workplace Safety Responsibility
It is the responsibility of employers to ensure their employees’ safety in the workplace.
Workers, too, have a duty of care towards their own health and safety and that of others (co-workers) who may be affected by their actions. Employees can find out more about their rights and responsibilities on the HSE website. If employees feel their employer is exposing them to risks or not appropriately managing health and safety, they can make a complaint to HSE for further action.
Employers have a legal duty to manage workplace health and safety for their employees and must do whatever is reasonably practicable to do so. Key responsibilities of employers include:
- To protect employees from anything that may cause harm. This means controlling risks to injury.
- To assess risks in the workplace. Risk assessments must address all risks at the premises.
- To inform employees about risks in the workplace. Information must include how employees are protected, information on the risks, and training on how to deal with them.
- To consult with employees on health and safety issues, either directly or through a safety representative.
Employers can find out exactly what they must do regarding employee safety with the UK Government guidance.
Employee Workplace Safety Importance
For employees, it is important they feel safe for their happiness and wellbeing at that job. Knowing they are cared for and adequately protected can give great peace of mind. It is an employee’s legal right to feel safe and no employee should have to face unnecessary risk that could lead to injury or harm while undertaking their job.
Businesses with egregious failings in employee safety will have a damaged reputation and may struggle to recruit employees. Employers should offer a safe, welcoming environment for a workplace at the very minimum.
Legally, employee safety is critical. Employers have a legal duty to protect employees and may face serious consequences if they fail to do so properly. Reparations can include fines, penalties, insurance issues, loss of licences, compensation pay outs, loss of revenue and more.
The legal, financial and personal ramifications of failure to properly protect employees’ safety cannot be overstated. Employers must understand the importance of employer safety else they risk serious consequences.
Tips for Employee Workplace Safety
Install Fire Alarms
Under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) 2005, it is the legal duty of the ‘responsible’ person (building owner, facilities manager, employer etc.) to carry out a fire risk assessment and respond to any issues accordingly. Having an effective fire alarm system in place can alert employees to the risk of fire and play a pivotal role in keeping employees safe. There are a range of workplace fire detection systems to choose from; manual break-glass units, heat detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, flame detectors and so on.
To find the ideal fire detection and suppression system for your workplace and protect your employees, speak to professional fire system installers such as A.P.E Fire & Security. As fire experts accredited to BAFE SP203-1, we help businesses assess their premises, identify risks, and implement professional tailored fire systems befitting requirements.
Have Security Cameras
Aside from monitoring day-to-day activities within a workplace, security cameras – such as IP CCTV – can act as deterrents to intruders eager to not be caught on camera and offer peace of mind to employees. Effective positions for cameras include entranceways, doorways and communal areas where criminal activity may take place or intruders enter. If a security breach does occur, footage can be instrumental in the following investigation, again giving employees confidence that security failures will be rectified.
A.P.E Fire & Security are appointed HIK Silver Partners, able to provide outstanding HIK expertise and technical capabilities to keep premises and people safe.
Perform Regular Security Assessments
Employers should not leave employee safety to chance and should regularly review security systems to ensure they are optimally performing and offering protection. Knowing that systems are routinely examined and tended to, instead of just being installed and left, will give employees peace of mind that you put active effort into their safety. The importance of security assessments should not be overlooked in the safety of employees.
Use Access Controls
One way to make employees feel safe in the workplace is by ensuring only approved personnel has access to the workplace. Modern access control systems span a range of protection levels, user numbers, and security; from key fobs controlled by a unified system for quick changes (ideal for large footfall workplaces) to biometric scanners for bolstered access, access control systems have a range of benefits for businesses.
Additional to physical access measures, intercom systems can provide employees with reassurance about workplace visitors as they allow for verification before entering the building. Videx intercom systems provide door entry intercom and access control solutions with various entrance panels, telephone and video design systems to fit varying requirements of employers.
If you are looking for access control system installation, here at A.P.E Fire & Security we partner with a range of leading brands to offer top access control services, including: Paxton, ARAS RBH, Control Soft, ACT, Videx, Comelit & BQT Solutions.
Train and Teach
While security systems and fire detection equipment may reassure employees, without employers teaching and offering training, employees may still be at risk of harm. It is critical employees know what to do if they have a security concern, how to react in the event of a fire, or procedure to follow if a serious event occurs. Therefore, employees should be taught about risks in the workplace as well as carry out drills/training to prepare for an actual incident. By routinely practising drills, employees are more likely to react quickly, calmly and responsibly in the event of a threat.
Get Started with A.P.E Fire & Security
We are certified fire and security service providers with over 40 years’ industry experience, offering professional design, installation and service, accredited by recognised industry bodies to the highest British Standards. With extensive experience and a reputation for quality, we have been able to partner with some of the most reliable and trusted industry-leading product partners including Paxton, Honeywell, HIK Vision, Net2, SLATO, and many more.
Get in touch for a free, no obligation quote, or to arrange a free consultation. Our specialist team help businesses in a range of sectors to effectively protect premises, assets and employees with tailored solutions.