While insurance policies are in place to protect your business from shouldering the cost of someone being injured, it’s even more important to do all you can to prevent injuries in the first place.
Consider the following tips for preventing employee and customer injuries.
Preventing Employee Injuries
Preventing employee injuries not only protects your employees’ mental and physical wellbeing, it protects your business, too. Because while Workers’ Compensation covers the costs associated with employee injuries, it does not cover reduced productivity, overtime or training replacements.
You can better protect your employees by:
- Following OSHA guidelines. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) ensures safe and healthy working conditions by setting and enforcing standards and providing training, outreach, education and assistance.
- Incorporating a safety and wellness plan. The foundation for a safe work environment is an effective accident prevention program. The program needs to cover all levels of employee safety and health with the encouragement to report hazardous practices or behavior.
- Implementing training. Provide workplace safety training, including how to identify hazards and basic first aid as part of employee onboarding. Offer refresher training on a regular basis.
- Having adequate staffing levels. Overworked employees may suffer from exhaustion and skip steps to complete tasks ahead of schedule. Hiring additional part-time or seasonal staff can help prevent accidents due to exhaustion.
- Keeping an orderly workplace. Poor housekeeping can cause serious safety hazards. The layout of the workplace should have adequate foot path markings, be free of debris and include stations for cleaning up spills.
- Inspecting and maintaining all equipment. Ensure all employee equipment is in good working condition. Replace any malfunctioning equipment immediately.
- Reviewing and improving your processes. Review and improve your program regularly, especially after accidents or “near misses.” Encourage employees to report newly identified hazards or workplace incidents so management can respond appropriately.
Preventing Customer Injuries
Preventing customer injuries is also important, as a customer injury can damage your business’s reputation and customer base. Protect your customers by:
- Inspecting your premises regularly. At the beginning of every shift, check that stations are tidy, bathrooms and floors are clean and dry, equipment is in good working order and employees are aware of any issues.
- Restricting access. Only give customers access to the areas needed to provide them service. Restrict any storage rooms, employee breakrooms, private offices and similar areas.
- Reducing hazards that cause slips, trips and falls. Slips, trips and falls are some of the most common customer injuries. Do all you can to reduce hazards like extension cords, wet floors, damaged flooring and more.
- Posting warning signs. If the floor is wet or an area is off limits, place safety signage to notify customers and employees. Ensure any damage is repaired as quickly as possible.
Preventing Employee and Customer Injuries at Your Franchise
The hazards that contribute to injuries can vary for each business and conditions may change frequently. Make sure employees take stock of any floor or layout changes each new shift and that delivery workers note the hazards of each location. Ensure good communication between employees and customers to minimize risks where possible.
Though taking the right precautions can greatly reduce the risk of an employee or customer injury, your business also needs General Liability and Workers’ Compensation insurance to fully protect your business against the cost of claims.
Lockton Affinity offers these policies and more. Get coverage today.