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Train Employees on Safety…More than Once

Bookmark and Share Employees who don't learn the safe way to work are accidents waiting to happen -- and that means that workplace safety training should play an integral role in your company's risk management program. Repetition is essential to this process. Make sure that your trainers repeat essential work safety concepts, information, and terms several times. Look at it this way: At any moment during a training session, some trainees probably aren't going to be paying full attention -- and if they don't hear something, they're not going to do it when they get back on the job. What's more, many people might need to hear, see, or experience things at least twice before they understand.

Repetition is also important when it comes to practical applications of safety information. Employees need the opportunity to practice what they've learned until it's locked into their heads and their performance is flawless. So when a safety procedure involves a practical act, be sure that the trainers give a demonstration, repeat it a few times until everybody catches on, and provide feedback while trainees practice.

You'll also need repetition to make sure that workers don't forget what they're supposed to have learned. Training industry leader Bob Pike says that people can remember 90% of what they've learned one hour after training, 50% after a day, 25% after two days, and only 10% 30 days later. According to Pike, full retention of subject matter requires no fewer than six repetitions! That means plenty of follow-up and refresher training -- especially for more complex material. Other experts recommend spacing safety reinforcement training so that employees can practice new procedures and skills or use new information on the job supported by coaching before they go back to the classroom for review and additional training.

Risk Management: Your Risk Profile

Bookmark and Share Chances are that you outsource most risk management functions to an insurance company representative or agent. However, to protect your business against the risks you face at a price you can afford, you need to control the presentation of your loss and coverage information to insurers. In other words, it makes sense to provide what an underwriter needs to write your business: a "risk profile" that shows a historic record of your exposures, loss data, and insurance contracts.

Your profile should include these items:
  • A history of the firm that's positive and realistic. The more effectively you've adapted to the recession, the better your chances of getting a competitive rate.
  • Resumes of key management— to show that you and your team know your business.
  • Marketing materials and Web page(s).
  • A D&B Report. Without one, you might get a lower grading. If you've had financial problems, some insurance companies might be willing to write your business, as long as you provide this information upfront.
  • Audited financial statements, if applicable.
  • Estimated values, including sales, workers compensation payroll, automobile fleet, property and equipment.
  • Sales and payrolls for the past five years.
  • Insurance loss runs and claim runs during the past five years for all policies, valued within 90 days of renewal.
  • An outline of your workplace safety plan(s).
  • Fleet maintenance schedules, if applicable.
  • Your workers compensation experience modification factor.
Be sure to review all data on your company in the files of your insurance company and add it to your database.

Maintaining a comprehensive, accurate, and updated risk profile, and staying on top of how you present this information, will play a key role in securing a comprehensive and cost-effective insurance program.

Our risk management specialists stand ready to offer their advice at any time.

Safety Inspection Objections

Bookmark and Share Safety consciousness tends to slip over time - and it's your responsibility to make sure that this doesn't happen. A well-prepared and well-executed safety audit/inspection program can play a key role in your risk management by uncovering conditions and work practices that could lead to job accidents and industrial illnesses.

Stated more positively, this means checking to see that things are in good shape. In addition to help preventing accidents, the inspection program will keep management informed about the "safety status" of your organization, provide a consistent method of recording observations, and reduce the possibility of important items being overlooked.

Safety inspection tours are like preventive maintenance. Every piece of equipment wears down and deteriorates sooner or later, and needs to be checked. Similarly, employee work procedures fall into routines - some of them unsafe - over time, which means that you need to evaluate them at regular intervals.

Safety inspections have a number of objectives:
  • Spotlighting unsafe conditions and equipment.
  • Focusing on unsafe work practices or behavior trends before they lead to injuries.
  • Uncovering the need for new safeguards.
  • Getting all employees to buy in to the safety program.
  • Re-evaluating the safety standards of the organization.
  • Comparing safety results against safety plans.
  • Gauging the relative success of safety training efforts.
  • Anticipating problems in advance of any OSHA inspection.
Our agency's risk management professionals would be happy to work with you on developing and implementing a comprehensive safety inspection program for your business. Feel free to get in touch with us at any time.

ERM and How it Can Help Your Business

Bookmark and Share ERM, or enterprise risk management, has become increasingly popular in recent years as businesses of all sizes have embraced the comprehensive approach that involves continual input aimed at managing all risks faced by a company. But before you can develop strategies to address emerging risks, you need to build a framework that can provide your company with an overall assessment of its risks and its risk level.

When building an ERM framework for your company, think of it as a powerful viewing platform that lets your business gain an overall appreciation for the risks that must be addressed throughout the entire company. Not sure how to begin? Here are a few guidelines to get your started:

Appoint a steering committee.
Establishing a committee to oversee the entire process will help your company stay focused on the end goal and it will also help avoid duplication of effort that can wind up costing time and money.

Assign responsibilities.
Assign the roles and responsibilities of all the key players who will contribute to your ERM plan. To avoid confusion, roles and responsibilities should be clearly defined and written down for review and reference.

Identify risks and prioritize them.
Ask for input from all your ERM participants to determine which risks are most pressing, and decide the order in which every risk should be addressed before developing mitigation plans.

Design plans to monitor and report actions and results.
Unless you track your results and outcomes, you won't know what's working and what's not. Have a system in place for regular reporting so all team members can be held accountable.

ERM is a dynamic and ongoing process designed to evolve with your business. To ensure the best outcomes for your business, reviewing your ERM program should be a continuous event that involves stakeholders from all levels. Yes, it's work -- but it can provide tremendous benefits.