How to Identify and Prevent Office Safety Hazards

The scuttlebutt is, they don’t want to come back…

From Comcast to Apple, to the President himself, employers across the country are trying to get their employees back to the office. The problem is, only 44% of them want to return.

If you’re facing this situation, what can you do to sweeten the deal? Well, making sure your office is safe and inviting is a great way to start. The office is full of potential hazards that need to be identified and addressed.

Let’s take a quick look at some common office safety hazards and how to prevent them.

Uncomfortable Office Furniture

Sitting at a desk all day is not good for anyone. Research has linked it with obesity, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and even cancer. 

Poorly designed office chairs plus desks and monitors at the wrong height can cause daily back and neck pain for some employees. It’s important to include an ergonomic assessment as part of your workplace safety protocols. 

You may need to invest in some new equipment, including desks that allow employees the option to sit or stand. Better ergonomics will mean a healthier and more productive workforce.

‘Not My Job’ Culture

A culture of not taking responsibility for safety can be just as dangerous as physical dangers. Safety training can help your employees to see that safety is everybody’s job.

Spills can lead to slips, trips, and falls and it’s not just the janitor’s responsibility to clean them up. You need to get everyone in the business from the top down invested in keeping the office clean and safe. This will help you to prevent injuries and the downtime that goes along with them.

No First Aid Supplies

Imagine that Bruce cuts himself in the office kitchen. Now’s not the time to discover there are no plasters in the first aid kit!

You need to take a regular inventory of the first aid kits to make sure that it’s well-stocked and the contents have not passed their expiration date. Assign a designated employee the responsibility to complete the inventory and order FASO refills.

HVAC Maintenance

If your HVAC system is not regularly maintained and cleaned it could be making your employees sick.

When it’s working well, your HVAC system filters out allergens. If it gets clogged, it can start to circulate them around the office. Mold can also develop in the ducting. 

If you see an uptick in respiratory illnesses among your staff, start by getting your AC serviced and thoroughly cleaned.

Not Enough Breaks

Eyestrain is common among employees who spend most of the day staring at a computer screen. It causes headaches, sore eyes, and makes it hard to concentrate. Avoid this by encouraging your employees to take regular breaks – from the screen that is.

This doesn’t mean encouraging 20-minute water cooler breaks every hour. But five minutes of working on non-screen activities can help to reduce the strain.

Eliminate Those Office Safety Hazards!

Getting rid of office safety hazards starts with taking a good, hard look at both your office and the workplace culture.

If you create an office environment that emphasizes safety, your employees will follow. Supply ergonomic chairs and desks. Keep first aid supplies topped up and keep your HVAC systems well maintained. 

All of this will tell them you care and create a safety-first attitude among your staff.

If you’ve enjoyed this article, we’ve got lots more for you! Head over to our Business section today!

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