It has been said, ‘A manager wears many hats; in times of pressure, the H&S hat is the first one that is taken off’.
With many “non-essential” companies reopening for business following government restrictions being eased, employers are having to prepare to operate with reduced staff numbers and other covid related restrictions. The Health, safety and wellbeing of employees is more important than ever, but, with so many employers feeling the financial burden of coronavirus, people without the necessary knowledge and experience are being asked to undertake a Health and Safety role they are not prepared for.
Whilst employers understand they have a legal duty to ensure the health, safety and welfare of their employees, for many this task is a burden on their time, resources and understanding. Compliance can be a minefield and regulations are continuously updated to reflect change in time and incorporating a new-found understanding. Great reassurance can be taken from knowing many of the changes are easily incorporated, many H&S tasks are already checked off with your arrangements. But who is identifying the gaps that leave you exposed?
In-House H&S management is key to success when done properly – you have the people, the knowledge and the experience to run your business, however, are you confident that you are protecting them and fully complying with legislation?
You have options
Resource In-house – If you choose to appoint an existing staff member as the person responsible, make sure they have the skills, knowledge, and experience with appropriate training to fulfill the role.
Employ a H&S Advisor – We would suggest you review their resources against the workload perhaps a third-party to provide an annual review or regular support may be required.
Outsource in part or in full – Both options can be supported by a Consultant to ensure the appointed person is happy, confident, and compliant with health and safety law and how it affects your company. You can appoint a health and safety professional to review and support your needs, offer advice and guidance, and become an integral part of your team, working closely when needed to guide and protect your workforce.
Reduced Costs – Instead of appointing or employing internally which would cost you a salary, training and time, you could outsource to a dedicated team who adapt their ‘presence’ to what is needed – there when you need support, no cost when you don’t.
Reduced Risk – An advisor identifying H&S issues and the possible solutions will reduce the risk of non-compliance. Did you know that currently, the HSE would charge YOU £157 per hour whilst they investigate a material breach of H&S Law?
Good Image – Any business who can demonstrate their commitment to H&S can reap the benefits by increased business, profit, and reputation.
Productive Workforce – Developing and managing occupational H&S takes time and the management of it can be daunting. Leave it to the professionals, reducing time and pressure on your Management Team instead of adding to someone’s already busy role.
Clarity and Guidance – Managing your business sometimes clouds your judgement on decisions to be made and event he risks posed – you could be too close to see the issues. Outsourcing allows for a view of the bigger picture to then work at with manageable realistic goals.
Flexibility – Whether your workload increases, your workforce decreases, or the holiday season takes your usual resources away, a Consultant can be there to act quickly and professionally until you are comfortable to take the reins back.
When is the right time to outsource?
Do you have appointed competent health and safety support to manage your business and protect your people?
Do you have a health and safety policy with supporting arrangements and procedures (for those with 5 or more employees) to ensure the safety of not only your employees but also others who could be affected by your business?
Do you have suitable and sufficient risk assessments for your work?
Do you have a process for accidents and incidents – how to record, investigate but also learn from them?
Do you know the capabilities of your workforce and have you identified training and information they may need to work safely?
If you have answered no to any of these questions, now is the time to get in touch.