Kathy Eastman on April 1, 2014
OSHA Requirements: 3 Steps to Compliance
Caring for the health and wellbeing of your workforce is not only something that should be done from an ethical standpoint, you’re also legally obligated. To ensure that certain standards are met, OSHA was
What is OSHA?
An acronym for the United States Occupation Safety and Health Administration, OSHA was created by Congress in 1970 because of the Occupational Safety and Health Act. According to OSHA, their mission is “to assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women by setting and enforcing standards and by providing training, outreach, education and assistance.”
It is their duty to regulate workplaces so that employees can be kept free from harm, and there are no safety or health violations. Staying compliant with OSHA regulations is an essential part of running a successful business.
Here are three simple steps to improving OSHA compliance.
1) Get Consultation and Instruction
Basic consultation to get your business up to speed on what’s expected and how to improve health and safety while reducing hazards will be given for free by request. There is also a wide array of OSHA training available for both business owners and employees. This can include general industry classes and industry specific classes for those with more inherent hazards like the construction industry.
Business owners or managers can learn about topics like machine guarding, record keeping and electrical standards. Workers can learn how to perform their duties while staying safe on the job. This page from the OSHA website explains the consultation and training process in better detail.
2) Display an OSHA Poster
Every covered employer is required to have the “OSHA Job Safety and Health: It’s the Law” poster located in a visible location of the workplace. This poster highlights important policies so employees can go over their rights and responsibilities and review it when necessary. You can order a print copy or download a smaller copy online and print it out. Besides the English version, it’s also available in Spanish, Portuguese and Polish. This link will show you how to get a copy for your business.
3) Engage in Safety Activities
Once you have gained a solid understanding of OSHA requirements, it’s smart to go over the things you have learned with team members. This could involve performing safety drills in case someone was exposed to a hazardous material or taking preventative safety measures. Usually, a combination of formal meetings along with hands on demonstrations will get your point across and equip employees with the necessary knowledge to comply with regulations.
Although it takes some effort and ongoing employee training to meet OSHA requirements, it is well worth it when you’re able to run a safe workplace. Employees will appreciate the fact that they can perform their jobs without the threat of injury or health complications. You can also keep your business safe from lawsuits and other issues and operate knowing that you’re compliant.
Photo Source: Wikimedia Commons