For occupational health and safety risks to be reduced and managed in a workplace, safety audits are absolutely imperative. If a workplace is to be a safe place to work, a proactive approach is critical, and health and safety audits provide a way to identify hazards that you have never previously considered.
It can be perilous to assume that ‘it will all be fine’ or to only realise that the workplace you provide is dangerous when problems are brought to your attention. Worse still, it’s terrible to learn of a problem through an accident at a worksite. For example, it can be easy to overlook or minimise the risks to workers when they are working at heights. However, by consulting with an expert height safety organisation and accessing the information and resources on websites such as www.safeatheightsqld.com.au , you can be reassured that you are providing a workplace that is as possible.
What is a workplace safety audit?
A workplace safety audit is a documented way of reviewing the systems of work in your organisation. Through such an audit, the systems of safe work that exist and are implemented in the workplace are analysed to determine how well they are compliant with occupational health and safety legislative requirements. The process of review will also reveal the safe work practices that need to be changed to indeed be safe.
Workplace safety inspections:
Very often, workplace safety audits are concurrently done with occupational health and safety inspections. In the course of an inspection, hazards that may be compromising the health and safety of employees will be identified. Sometimes, an inspection is planned but it can otherwise involve quite an informal walk around the organisation.
The importance of workplace inspections and audits should not be underestimated. Essentially, and in combination, audits and inspections are pivotal to the prevention of injuries and illnesses, and the results generated should lead to corrective action.
A great opportunity
Workplace safety audits and inspections, conducted regularly, are a crucial component of the overarching occupational health and safety program of your organisation. In fact, the opportunities that arise from these audits and inspections enable you as an employer to:
- Learn about and understand the concerns that are held by your employees
- Have a better appreciation of the jobs and tasks that are carried out
- Be aware of and active in the identification of workplace hazards and their causes
- Implement hazard controls and monitor them (e.g. policies and procedures, as well as measures such as personal protective equipment)
- Undertake appropriate actions to correct risks and hazards
Workplace safety audits and inspections are important for every business, but perhaps there is no more important industry for these audits and inspections than the construction industry. In construction, workers tend to be faced with significant risks and hazards, not the least of which is working at heights.
By committing to thorough and effective auditing and inspection, and by taking the necessary actions to address risks, it is possible to create a safe workplace for your employees. There is great value in providing a safe workplace that enables employee productivity and a positive approach to work.