OSHA identifies the following three main elements of an effective safety and health program.
Successful programs all begin with management commitment.
There are a number of ways management can show their commitment besides financial and resource support. They can factor safety into plans and decisions of the company from construction/renovations to process changes to company policies. Management can also establish rewards and recognition programs for safety participation and achievements as well as making safety a daily part of conversations. At every company event or meeting, a moment can be made available for safety. Safety goals, expectations, achievements, and even the incidents and near misses need to be highlighted through company communication channels.
Genuine worker participation efforts need to ensure workers feel comfortable about speaking up when issues are found or injuries happen.
You can encourage worker participation through involving them in program design elements, job hazard analyses, site inspections and incident investigations. Programs which allow workers to assess the safety of themselves and those around them are helpful, as are tools for reporting near misses and incidences of good safety practices.
Finding and Fixing Hazards
A strong safety program finds issues and resolves them before they become an issue.
Take a look into your incidents and determine what is the root cause of those? Are you continually having the same issues in your near misses? What are the injuries in your OSHA 300 logs? Is there a correlation? If there are similarities, then you have a place to start. Involve workers and solicit their ideas in how to make those operations safer. Is there a way to do things differently with minimal efforts and investments? Use the hierarchy of controls when determining solutions. Is there a way to remove the hazard completely? Are the controls you currently have in place working or do they need to have some reevaluation?
So How Do You Get It All Accomplished?
There are a lot of pieces that will need to be accomplished. Consider using 1 Stop Compliance as a resource for getting some of these pieces completed.
We have assisted hundreds of companies with their safety programs and have been involved in strengthening safety cultures and putting program elements in place. Not only can iSi be an extra set of hands, but sometimes in developing programs, an experienced third-party to lend ideas or even serve as a mediator can be helpful.