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Workplace Safety and Health Tips
to Improve Employee Wellness

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Importance of Workplace Safety and Health

As the world shifts to a hybrid work model, there's an emphasis on employee wellness in and out of the physical office space. Many companies are adopting work-from-home models and improved employee benefits. This includes unlimited paid time off, partially covered health care insurance, and expanded maternity and paternity leave. One advantage of this evolution is helping improve employees' mental and physical health. These updates to the now-outdated full-time workplace model are just the beginning of a successful, employee-centric health and safety policy.

What is health and safety in the workplace?

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) defines health and safety in the workplace as the "process of protecting employees from work-related illness and injury." Employers must abide by OSHA's guidelines or risk violating laws and policies and subjecting themselves to penalties.

Who oversees health and safety in the workplace?

In most instances, a company's department of Human Resources is responsible for establishing and maintaining health and safety policies. HR is also responsible for educating new and current employees. The education process includes clearly explaining health care benefits and the difference between paid time off, sick time, and any other benefits the company provides.

Establishing In-Office Workplace Safety and Health Expectations

There are many important items to cover for a company creating a new in-office workplace safety and health plan or addressing an older plan. Here are some key considerations for companies.

  1. Create a clear line of communication for employees to access information, report issues, and make suggestions for improvements to workplace health.
  2. Establish strict rules surrounding workplace safety and potentially dangerous equipment that may require training and certification to use.
  3. Set expectations and enforce rules on personal protective equipment. Even a small lapse in enforcement can lead to repercussions.
  4. Create a work environment that allows regular breaks, encourages participation in wellness programs, and helps form healthy lifestyle habits.
  5. Identify all essential components of a healthy work environment, such as an AED, first aid kit, fire extinguisher, fire alarm, and emergency exits.

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How to Support Healthy Behaviors in Work-From-Home Models

As the dust settles, it appears 25% of the U.S. workforce may be working at home leaving site permanently, while another 20% might split their time between an at-home office and the workplace. This highlights the importance of expanding workplace health rules and regulations outside of the office building or work site. Here are some more at-home considerations to include in a company's wellness program.

Accounting for Physical and Mental Health

Until recently, mental health was not typically the focus of wellness programs and employee health guidelines. Now considered a crucial component of a healthy work environment, mental health is a core aspect of health care and health programs offered by companies of all sizes.

Physical wellness programs include but are not limited to:

Mental wellness programs include but are not limited to:

Explore Mental Health Insurance Benefits

Read More

Final Thoughts on Workplace Health and Safety

Creating a comprehensive health and safety plan is important. It will give companies an advantage in taking care of employee happiness, health, and productivity. By ensuring OSHA compliance leaving site and adding premium health care insurance options, companies can retain and improve their workforce.

Learn more about small business plans available in your area.

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