The legendary El Cheapo motif for industrial safety really is Stone Age business practice. There aren’t too many rationales for taking risks with OHS, particularly since the words “class action” are now almost a reflex in the industrial courts of the world. OHS and safe work practices actually improve productivity, in some cases drastically. Employers who win corporate awards for their workplace quality are among the most efficient on Earth.
There’s still some prehistoric myth in the business world that OHS is something to avoid, and that it’s “smart” to cut corners and that it “saves money” by skimping on safety. Nothing could be further from the facts, or more dangerous to businesses than this myth. The “smart” approach usually results in multi-million dollar lawsuits, wrecked lives and destroyed businesses. In many cases, a whole workplace can be shut down for ages while safety problems are investigated and the business gets grilled by authorities about its procedures.
Industrial safety – Best OHS practice is best business practice
The workplace is one of the most dangerous places on Earth. Industrial accidents do more damage, globally, than some wars, every year. Serious injuries are still all too common, but it’s noticeable that many workplaces, including industry leaders, have excellent records and rarely have accidents at all.
The truth is that top businesses do everything well, and OHS is one of the benchmarks for a well-run, alert organization with quality management. A workplace with its OHS operating at full efficiency will also be operating its business extremely efficiently. OHS is by definition best practice, and in all industries, best practice is decided by professionals, experts in their fields. Regulations are also based on these principles, and safety standards are established this way.
The fact is that OHS is based on identifying problems, and most of the problems in the workplace have direct ramifications for business efficiency and productivity. Hazards are identified and prevented. Malfunctions are fixed immediately, not left to create problems. These are benchmark practices, and many top line businesses go a lot further, building in and designing customized safe production and operational safeguards.
In many cases, “safer” also means “more efficient”. Good streamlined CAD-based workplace designs are infinitely more practical, safer, and cost-efficient in terms of production, and OHS is built in as a matter of course. The designers simply work on the best practice approach, using best practice, laws and regulations as working parameters.
The result of getting OHS right is actually huge savings on OHS. The modern designs avoid the risks entirely, making everything from workplace OHS management to insurance a lot simpler and definitely a lot cheaper.
Industrial sanity starts with good business practices, with built in guarantees and safeguards against problems. Efficient production beats cheap and nasty production, and invariably gets a bigger market share. In the new market, where sustainability and Green production are defining drivers, you’ll never see a business without good OHS.
It’s no coincidence that “sanity” and “safety” are always on the same page.