$170 billion per year. This is how much US businesses lose annually due to workplace accidents and sickness, according to OSHA. OSHA also notes that businesses with an active workplace safety program can reduce their exposure by 20-40%.
Certainly, these are big numbers that can make or break a company.
The strength (or lack thereof) of a workplace safety culture has a direct impact on these numbers.
Safety Policy vs. Safety Culture
Having a workplace safety “policy” is different from having a safety “culture.” In fact, most businesses have a safety policy, while many do not have a safety culture.
A safety culture starts at the top and requires a dedication of resources, time, and training.
Companies that regularly convey, “we care about your safety” and execute real safety programs are sure to benefit over those that don’t.
Benefits of a Safety Culture
By having a workplace safety culture that identifies hazards and trains employees to avoid them, any company can actually become more profitable. Examples:
- Fewer accidents mean lower insurance costs. By lowering operating costs, a company becomes more competitive in the market
- Employees lose less time out, reducing training and replacement
- Employees feel valued and included. These perceptions translate into increased productivity
BMS’s Workplace Safety Culture
At BMS, we have established a safety culture by creating a formal safety program and employing dedicated staff. The program is based on actual training sessions conducted regularly by trained professionals. Our in-house Safety Trainers interact with building staff to review safety concerns in the following areas:
- Chemical Usage
- Safe Lifting
- Equipment Operation
- Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
- Bloodborne Pathogens
- Building Evacuation Protocol
Our training is conducted through videos and live training exercises. Additionally, we incorporate testing to gauge how effective the training has been.
We also partner with outside third parties to monitor and improve our procedures. Organizations such as OSHA, Local 32BJ (SIU), International Sanitary Supply Association (ISSA), Green Seal, and The Building Wellness Institute (BWI) have all audited our practices and conducted joint training sessions. BMS has certifications from these organizations attesting to the effectiveness of our programs.
Above all, this is about doing the right thing. Right by our employees, our customers, and our industry. The fact that these practices make us profit is a very happy coincidence.
A shout out to BMS’s dedicated Safety Trainer, Pedro Toribio, who is our rock in all things Safety.