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What does Workplace Safety Mean in 2020?
Posted By: Becca Meyers on June 30, 2020

No matter the sector or size, businesses need employees and customers to be safe and healthy in order to operate. Therefore, the companies must provide a working environment that promotes all the factors impacting the safety, health, and well-being of employees, as well as customers. Workplace safety can encompass environmental hazards, violence at the workplace, drug, and alcohol abuse, and during this period, the defaulting of safety precautions designed to keep COVID-19 at bay. The underlying principles of workplace safety remain the same, while the dynamics and execution change over the years. Let us find out what workplace safety means in the year 2020.

Improve Safety and Health for Workers

Employers and employees alike are responsible for safety at the workplace. Employers roll out safety policies under the guidelines by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), to protect the employees from harm. 

Employees, visitors, and contractors are then expected to follow these policies to maintain a balance in safety precautions. We are currently living in a world trying to combat a pandemic. Therefore, the rules of normal operations within an organization has to change too. 

With additional recommendations such as social distancing and limited interactions, more spaces are required to operate within the safety standards, or institutions will be forced to adopt work from home alternatives. This is the reality of workplace safety at this time. Organizations are paving ways and allowing all non-essential workers to work from home, while all the essential workers get directed to follow COVID-19 recommended guidelines at the workplace. This will mean that employee interactions are currently at the minimum possible range, and the wearing of protective gear at the workplace is the new normal. This reality is expected to continue for a long time.

Increase Awareness on Workplace Safety

These are unprecedented times, and policies are only as good as their enforcers and acceptance. A higher form of discipline is required for workplace safety to be attained. The first year of the new decade, 2020, has brought with it the need to overhaul known employee work culture within organizations. Many institutions are adopting new operational measures and procedures contrary to the culture previously cultivated in their organization. 

The promotion of social distancing and discouraging social gatherings, for example, have turned tables in the training and motivating aspects for employees by employers. Cultural changes in an organization need to be gradual. 

However, recent events have demanded a quick response to challenges on many fronts. Therefore, to attain any form of success, a workplace safety training program needs to be established. The training process is curated to address COVID-19 concerns and other regulatory or legal requirements of an organization and its employees. In the interest of time and cost, it is wise for organizations to employ the services of independent bodies with professionals that are proficient in making an organization safer through training.

Gaining Public Confidence

Many businesses and organizations operate under the umbrella motivation of profit. This means that a good or service gets exchanged to make profits. Therefore, human interaction is almost impossible to eliminate. Occurrences in the recent past have instilled some degree of fear in the traders. The consumers of goods and services from institutions and the service providers remain on the look-out for the possibility of harm or loss while conducting businesses. Therefore, workplace safety has stopped being primarily concerned with the well-being of company employees and has also been made to inspire business associates' confidence. This is done to try and salvage business operations that have led to the loss of large amounts of money. Safety precautions at work and delivery OSHA programs now go overboard to rekindle business activities by reassuring safety standards while in operation. The safer the public feels on their interaction with businesses, the more they are likely to respond positively to efforts that might sometimes make them uncomfortable.

In conclusion, the world is experiencing massive changes in all sectors of production. The working conditions have also been affected by periods of low economic output and high consumer demand. Organizations are forced to rearrange their priorities in favor of safety for its employees and associates to make resolutions bordering damage control. Organizations in 2020 have put more emphasis on meeting the objectives set by OSHA in employee workplace safety. Many institutions also have a culture change to embrace changes in society, while better safety standards lead to secured public confidence.

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