Riskex is pleased to support European Week for Safety and Health at Work, which this year is focussed on the topic of creating safe workspaces for people of all ages, across all European states.

An Ageing Workforce

By 2030, workers aged 55–64 are expected to make up 30% or more of the workforce in many European countries.  With the changes to default retirement ages, increased life expectancy, and the rise of the State Pension age, the number of older workers has been steadily on the rise.

There are age-related myths to be dispelled, and this HSE web page has some useful facts, as well as guidance about factors to consider for creating a healthy and safe work environment for older people.

Guidance page:   HSE Guidance For Older Workforce

 

Young People Joining The Workforce

At the other end of the spectrum, young people under 18 are an increasing feature, either as employees, for work experience or as apprentices. The issues are unique to this age group, and the HSE’s web page below explains what employers need to consider in order to establish young people safely in their organisation.

Guidance page:   HSE Guidance For Young Workers

An estimated two thirds of UK businesses may be in breach of basic health and safety laws and are putting their employees in danger, according to research.

A survey of companies with 5 employees or more was conducted with 2,000 people, and found that 65% of them haven’t received any information about their company’s health and safety policies – despite this being a legal requirement.

The research conducted by WorkMobile, also revealed that even when workers were provided with written health and safety guidance, the information didn’t fully explain the risks.

27 per cent of staff who had received and read their company’s health and safety manual thought it didn’t go into enough detail about their role and the dangers they could face, or how to deal with risky situations.

As a result, the majority of workers don’t feel they are well equipped to deal with a hazardous situation if one occurred. 20 per cent would have no idea how to report an issue or hazard at work, while 32 per cent only have a vague idea about how to handle the situation, but would still need to ask for help or consult with the company’s procedure documents first. That’s over 50% of people not fully equipped to deal with a situation.

Despite UK health and safety laws being constantly updated in order to keep them accurate and relevant, 13 per cent of employees said their company’s safety handbook has never been updated since they first received it. Perhaps more worrying is that 31 per cent don’t think their handbook ever needs to be updated.

So, in light of these rather startling facts, what can companies do to give staff the tools to stay safe? Increasing awareness of employee wellbeing is encouraging companies to grow their safety culture, with individuals taking more personal responsibility for their own, and others’, safety.

With the vast availability of IT in our lives, we can enjoy instant access to the latest information – particularly relevant in the workplace, using a cloud-based data solution. It takes management leadership and vision to invest in employee wellbeing, supplying the tools and encouraging the change.

AssessNET’s Portal is the ideal gateway for people to access a company’s Health and Safety data. Using an instant access link button placed on their computer device screen, staff and contractors can view information from the main AssessNET system (such as Risk Assessments), report incidents and hazards for corrective action, and view specific policies and guidance in a read-only format.

This is all achieved without the need to log in with a password to the central AssessNET system – meaning greater transparency and flexibility across the whole organisation, encouraging a culture of collective responsibility for Risk Management.

The research statistics make worrying reading, but by using a system such as AssessNET, with its Portal facility, it is clear that the issues the survey raised could be easily addressed.

So, with all this in mind, how does your company measure up? Are you doing enough to be legally compliant? Portal is the tool to connect everyone to Health and Safety. Call us to discuss AssessNET’s Portal and how it can help give your people the tools to stay safe.

 

Learn more about AssessNET’s Portal