Warehouse safety should be an essential part of your day-to-day operations, and the best way to ensure that safety remains a focus for all employees is to create a safety management plan. Why is warehouse safety so important? Because it can affect so many aspects of the organization, including productivity and efficiency, as well as employee well-being and morale.
Productivity and efficiency — Poor safety planning can result in equipment malfunction due to poor maintenance, an increased need for repairs, and a greater number of injuries. All of these events contribute to inefficiencies and require equipment to be shut down for maintenance, inspection or repair. Unplanned downtime is also a major detractor from productivity and can be avoided with proper planning.
Employee well-being and morale — Employee safety should be a paramount concern for any manager and facility owner. Ensuring that workers remain safe while they are on the job is a primary responsibility of warehouse management. Moreover, workplace morale is bound to suffer if injuries occur or employees are unsure or worried about their safety.
Working without a properly developed (and executed) safety management plan can negatively impact the profitability and even the viability of a warehouse operation. Safety is closely tied to the success of the business and helps you avoid the injuries and unplanned downtime that hurt employee morale and productivity.
How to Create a Safety Plan
Without a plan, warehouse safety management will never be as robust as it can be. Follow these steps to develop a safety plan for your facility.
Clarify your goals — If workplace safety is not already codified as part of your company charter, it is time to take that step. A top-down focus on safety is the best way to drive adoption of and adherence to the safety practices that you implement.
Gather key metrics — Collect available information on incidents, uptime, operational statistics and more to use in setting a baseline starting status. Then set the goal of where you would like those numbers to be. In addition, this data will help you identify areas of special focus, where closer attention to safety might be needed.
Assemble your team — Information and expertise from across the organization is necessary to assemble a good safety plan. At this stage of your plan, it is time to assemble a Safety Squad from all levels of the company to share knowledge and act as safety ambassadors to their departments or units. For example, forklift operators or managers will have a much better understanding of material handling safety concerns, so they should have input on practices and policies in that area.
Create your policy — With information, data and best practices in hand, you are ready to create a policy that is tailored to your organization and operations. Be thorough and detailed, and ensure that every worker has access to the policy when they need it, perhaps through the company’s internal website.
Continue to update it — Safety best practices evolve, facilities and equipment change, and new areas of concern may be identified. In short, safety is an ever-changing concern that requires ongoing vigilance. Review your policy regularly and don’t hesitate to update it when necessary.
Need more information or assistance in developing a safety management plan for your workplace? Equipment Depot offers integrated warehouse and fleet management solutions as well as a wide range of safety training programs that help your team maintain safe, productive operations. Contact us today at 888.EQDEPOT to learn more.