Businesses around the country are working hard to establish a strong safety culture as part of their overall risk management strategies. Once established, a strong safety culture does more than just help employees to avoid accidents at work. It also improves employees’ sense that they belong to an organization that empowers and cares for them, raising morale and retention rates.
Building a strong safety culture in the context of a staffing firm can be more difficult than it is for a conventional business. Overcoming the diffuse nature of a staffing firm’s workforce is a challenge. But it’s a challenge worth tackling. Some of the approaches that can work include these:
- Start at the top.
As the name implies, a safety culture is a set of shared values and goals. Any organization that wants to develop a coherent culture must begin at the top. A firm’s executives, managers, and recruiters should emphasize the importance of safety at every opportunity. Employees who see and hear a consistent message of safety from company leaders will be encouraged to follow that philosophy in their daily work.
- Empower employees.
A key part of a strong safety culture is the authority employees know they have to address workplace hazards as they are discovered. Although a staffing firm’s employee may be working at a client’s location, he or she should feel confident about raising safety concerns with the client’s manager or, if the problem is not resolved, with the client coordinator at the staffing firm.
- Take client cultures into account.
Staffing firms are unique in that they must prepare their employees to integrate into their clients’ business culture. As part of the risk assessment that should accompany the client onboarding process, be sure to ask about the client’s safety culture. If the client already has robust practices in place, the firm might be able to learn something new. If the client needs work, the employees who work there may have opportunities to add value by identifying problems that the client should resolve.
Gunnin can help firms develop a strong safety culture.
Gunnin is a leading provider of risk management and workers’ compensation insurance services for the temporary staffing industry. As part of our comprehensive program to improve insurance outcomes for our clients, we examine existing cultures and help clients develop plans for achieving higher standards and better returns. To learn more about what Gunnin can do for your business, give us a call today.