An effective Health & Safety strategy has many positive influences on the workplace and having a practical understanding of the subject and how to effectively integrate it is one of the most effective future-proofing exercises any organisation can undertake.
What is Health & Safety?
According to the World Health Organization (WHO) the term ‘health & safety’ can be defined as anything that works towards the enhancement of the physical, mental and social well-being of workers and supports the development and maintenance of their working capacity, as well as their professional and social development at work.
Naturally then, we can categorise H&S issues either as those that seek to safeguard the physical safety of employees – effectively protecting them from any potential injury, illness or stress – or those that preserve their positive mental wellbeing.
Health & safety renovation should be seen as a significant opportunity to boost employee morale, safety, productivity and most importantly, retention.
There has never been a better time to invest in mental health & safety infrastructure and as such whether it is looking into the potential in Health & Safety Tools, investing in more effective Communications Software or Restructuring Your Business, the means of refining your capacity to deal with the mental health and safety needs of a remote workforce during Covid-19 are innumerable.
Broadly speaking, communication software refers to any system or app that allows users to exchange files and text, audio, and video messages via the cloud or local network from various devices. The most common examples include email, chat, and perhaps most importantly for evolving H&S purposes, messaging apps. Key examples of effective communication software include Slack and Google Hangouts.
The benefits of improving your communication software include:
- Instantaneous communication opportunities with staff, allowing you to quickly establish trust and provide a helping hand if necessary
- Video chat, allowing for face-to-face discussions and progress meetings
- Safe and secure infrastructure
- Easy to learn interface
- Apps and Integrations are easy, all work can be centralised in one place
- According to Gartner, when polling 317 CFOs and finance leaders, 74% said they will move at least 5% of their previously on-site workforce to permanently remote positions post-COVID 19, and nearly a quarter of respondents said they would move at least 20% to a permanently remote position.
Employees are often slow to engage with developing H&S protocols but by giving them the ability to seamlessly reach out and join the conversation helps them to make the change they’d like to see when working remotely.
Additionally according to a 2019 report by the American Psychological Association 50% of American workers reported they were comfortable talking about their mental health in the workplace; however, more than 30% feared job-related consequences if they seek mental health care, according to the press release. By investing in greater communication technology, these discussions can occur more easily and without the pressure that a face-to-face encounter may bring with it.
Finally, businesses could also invest in calendar and scheduling applications which can be attached to many major messaging apps. Automating the process in this way helps to reduce stress whilst boosting control.
To learn more, download the full report here or continue the debate at the HSE Insight Summit, a GDS Summit, where we bring together senior HSE executives who are actively seeking to share, learn, engage, and find the best technology solutions.
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