Everyone within your workplace needs to know how to work safely and without risks to health. You must provide clear instructions and information.
How you communicate with employees will be dependent on the size of your workforce and the activities you do. One of the simplest forms of communication is signage, think of the signs that you have in your workplace – is the message clear and easy to read? Does it contain lots of text as well as symbols and if so consider if a non-English speaker would be at risk.
You may also want to consider the use of noticeboards, leaflets, email and memos which can act as effective reminders of the health and safety rules you have in place. Whatever formats you decide to use you must make sure that the information is communicated effectively. For example, if you decide to send an email about a health and safety issue, can you ensure that everyone will receive and read it?
One piece of information you must provide to your employees is the HSE (health and safety executive) law poster. You can either display the HSE approved poster at all your work premises or alternatively you can give each employee a copy of the leaflet version.
For a health and safety management system to work effectively, there needs to be effective communication up, down and across the organisation.
It’s often the case that employees notice failing in the health and safety procedures of an organisation but their concerns do not reach upper management or the people who can make the changes necessary. It’s important that you have a system in place not only so health and safety information can be filtered down to employees but also that they have an opportunity to raise concerns and ask questions.
Whilst a large, high-risk workplace may have trade union representatives from different sites as members of a formal health and safety committee, the majority of smaller low risk workplaces are likely to have something less formal, but that doesn’t mean it’s less effective. Consider including health and safety as part of your general staff meetings, this can give employees a chance to raise concerns and put health and safety at the heart of your day to day activities.
Information you need to communicate to employees can include; your health and safety policy and procedures, emergency arrangements, first aid, prohibited areas, safe storage of equipment and chemicals, correct use of personnel protective equipment as well as information on specific tasks. With such a range of information to communicate it can be overwhelming, therefore prioritise the high risk areas first using your risk assessments and of course contact us at Avensure who are happy to advise.