by Jude Carter
EHS Today recently released their National Safety Survey
. Among other things, respondents identified the following as areas for improvement:
· Incentives and Recognition
· Cell phone policies
· Employee Buy-in
· Safety Culture
· Employee Weight management and fitness
· Budget/financial needs
Even though it’s not on the list, the thing that EHS professionals are looking for most is support from upper management. As one respondent said, “Before we are able to improve on safety anywhere in my organization, our upper management will need to get on board to let everyone know they are supportive.”
It’s not enough for senior management to give lip service to safety. It needs to become a strategic priority, much in the same way as production, quality and profitability are. That means that individual and team incentives, employee recognition programs and metrics need to be tied to specific safety goals.
Companies working toward VPP status really understand this. They know how powerful a VPP program can be in getting everyone in the company pulling toward a common, measurable goal. By committing the whole organization to creating a safety culture that goes above and beyond OSHA minimum safety standards, workers get the message in a big way that safety is a priority.
Clean Air Engineering has experienced the difference. According to Don Henning, project manager, “Our company, for a long time has tried to get everybody involved with the safety programs that we have. This concentration on trying to achieve VPP status has been successful in getting everyone on board.”