Benefits of Workplace Risk Assessments

Conducting a risk assessment in your workplace will allow you to minimize risks, better comply with workplace safety regulations and help you to create and maintain a healthier work environment.

Posted by Lindsay Khan in Health & Safety, Human Resources on February 12th, 2010

Internal assessments are the number one way to uncover risks in your workplace. Conducting a risk assessment in your workplace will allow you to minimize risks, better comply with workplace safety regulations and help you to create and maintain a healthier work environment.

The employer is responsible for removing all barriers to safe work. When this obligation is not upheld, the image of the company will suffer – it becomes harder to recruit great people and consumers will refrain from purchasing your products or services. When employees submit allegations of unsafe working conditions and injury happens while on the job, the outcome can become quite expensive once the legal and social costs are tallied.

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What is a Risk Assessment?

The group at healthyworkinglives.com gives a complete definition of the term risk assessment:

“A Risk Assessment is a systematic method of looking at work activities, considering what could go wrong, and deciding on suitable control measures to prevent loss, damage or injury in the workplace. The Assessment should include the controls required to eliminate, reduce or minimize the risks.”

Why Are Risk Assessments Important?

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It’s mandatory to ensure the safety of all employees while at work. Workplace safety is a major concern for employees, and is also an area that sparks numerous internal complaints. Even the smallest complaint made by an employee about the issue of safety in the workplace should be investigated. If you are unaware of the risks in your workplace, you are putting yourself, your employees, customers and the entire organization in danger. When it comes to employee safety, we recommend going above the legal minimum required in order to eliminate as much of the risk as possible and to reduce the number of safety related incidents reported.

Even the smallest complaint made by an employee about the issue of safety in the workplace should be investigated.

Examination of the workplace and its functions should happen at least once a year in order to remain up to date on any new risks that have been in introduced or discovered that could be compromising the ability of an employee to complete their work.  Whenever possible, it is best to be proactive instead of reactive regarding safety issues. A proactive measure would be to implement an investigation system, such as i-Sight, into your workplace in order to conduct better investigations and properly manage any type of internal incident. These systems will not let safety matters fall through the cracks, and will also help you make the workplace safer by following up on complaints and making the necessary adjustments to eliminate the problem.

Benefits of a Risk Assessment:

Millions of dollars are awarded in workplace safety cases each year. Many of these cases also gather significant media attention- putting your name in the spotlight in the most undesirable of times. When you take the time to conduct a risk assessment, evaluate the findings and make corrections to the risks discovered during the assessment, you will be providing the following benefits to your company:

  • Optimal Productivity- When you eliminate barriers that employees face when trying to complete their job and provide them with the proper working tools to complete tasks, productivity and the quality of the work completed will be higher. When employees have to deal with defective tools or systems, time is wasted trying to fix things, resulting in both time and money being wasted. Invest in facility upgrades, create an ergonomic workspace and properly train employees how to do their jobs safely in order to set the stage for optimal productivity.
  • Happier Employees- Providing a safe, healthy and stress-free workplace will result in positive employee attitudes, fewer days taken off due to illness or stress, and a stronger commitment to the goals of the company. Safety at work is a major concern for employees. When employees feel safe at work, they are more likely to want to remain working for you, decreasing employee turnover.
  • Better Qualified Employees- When people make their decisions regarding where to work, businesses that are known for their commitment to safety in the workplace are likely to be more attractive options for employees. It is better to have too many people wanting to work for you as opposed to having almost no one.
  • Saving Money- Fewer injuries lead to fewer costs. Happy employees lead to decreased turnover and training costs. Fewer incidents lead to a lesser chance of lawsuits, fines or penalties from labour boards. You get the picture. The cost of conducting a risk assessment and investing in making changes to the workplace are minimal when compared to the costs of the situations just mentioned.
  • Positive Image- Staying away from negative publicity will put you in the good books with the public, but it also increases opportunity for your company. When you are seen as committed to safety, other businesses will want to be associated with your brand.

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lindsayisight
lindsayisight

Marketing Coordinator

Lindsay Khan is the marketing manager for i-Sight Software. With an Honours Bachelor of Commerce degree in marketing from the University of Ottawa, she brings business acumen to the subjects she covers for the company blog and website. Lindsay compiles monthly newsletters, writes and promotes downloadable guides and press releases, promotes webinars and manages our online communities.

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