When it comes to identifying the factors that help in increasing the productivity of employees and make them more focused and dedicated to their work, workplace safety makes it to the top of the list.
A safe workplace does not only guarantee happier employees, but is also the key for a business’ reputation and success. According to research, the rate of insurance claims is very low in a company that offers safe working environment to its people.
Workplace Safety in Australia
Employees are the most valuable asset of any company and the government of Australia realizes that every person who steps out of thier house to work should be protected by law in order to ensure that safety issues that often arise at workplaces can be overcome. A set of Workplace Health and Safety (WHS) laws, called ‘model laws’ were legislated in 2011 by Safe Work Australia that is responsible for national policy development with regard to workplace health and safety.
WHS – What A Business Needs To Do?
The WHS regulations and act are legally binding frameworks that every business, no matter how big or small, have to implement within its boundary to ensure health and safety of its employees. While a large number of employment lawyers and advisors are there to guide you with regard to the safety measures an employer needs to take, here we outline the gist of Australian WHS legislations. In Australia, all businesses are required by the law to:
- Make an assessment of all the risks to the employees’ health and safety
- Take measures to prevent and control them.
- Make sure that all the machinery and the raw material that is being used at the workplace does not pose any threat to the safety or health of employees
- Implement practices to ensure safe handling and usage of all the goods, substances and material.
- Assess the layout of your workplace and make sure that all systems are safe to work at.
- To have proper compensation and insurance policy in place
In short, businesses are entitled to provide a working environment that is safe in every manner. For example, a business should not only focus on providing a harassment free place, but also make sure that there isn’t any threat to their health and safety from any object, such as machinery, cables, etc. It is to ensure protection from these types of threats that covering cables safely and training employees well before making them handle a machine and other similar measures are recommended.
Employers Too Have Responsibilities
In addition to formulating a rulebook for employers, the WHS has also outlined certain obligations for employees that are to be followed in order to make sure that the measures taken by the employer do not go waste. Under these obligations, all employees are to comply with every guideline and instruction provided by the employer to ensure safety and health, to not get willfully involved in any act that can be harmful for them or their co-workers and to not interfere with any work, especially that involve using machinery, until you are trained for that.