It’s National Safety Month and a great time to talk about one of the most important topics in telecoms: safety.
As you know, OSHA requires you to train workers on any hazards they may encounter while at work, from electrical hazards to work at heights. For many employers, safety training (and OSHA training in general) is seen as a one-and-done event for compliance.
In reality, safety training isn’t an event but an ongoing process. So how often should you offer safety training? Let’s look at best practices.
Training Starts with Orientation
The first time your team needs to encounter training is during health and safety orientation and before they visit the job site. Health and safety training is part of your federal (and state) OSHA obligations.
You must provide this training even when you hire ‘experienced’ workers.
If a role requires a certification, remember that you’ll need to update training or provide access to training at regular intervals to avoid certification lapses.
Refresh Training After a Near Miss
Another rule of thumb is to refresh training after an incident or injury. While this is a fine rule, you should also provide a refresher after a near miss.
A near miss is a deviation from the predicted norm. Even if there isn’t a loss, it’s an indicator that something, somewhere went wrong. So, it’s a good time to provide training because a near-miss now could become an incident down the road if left unaddressed.
Update Training Annually (or After a Process Change)
How often should you provide safety training? When everything is going well, you still need to offer it either annual or after a process change, whichever comes first.
Annual training is the best way to keep safety at the front of workers’ minds and update them on best practices. However, annual training doesn’t require you to carve out a week of time. Instead, a year-long safety training calendar can ensure you cover all the essential topics in bite-sized pieces.
Your calendar might include a year’s worth of continuing education, weekly safety stand-down topics, and any training that OSHA requires you to update on a regular basis.
Keep Safe All Year
National Safety Month is a great time to remember the importance of safety. However, safety needs to remain a year-round commitment to be effective. Training is a big part of a year-round safety program because it provides workers with up-to-date skills and refreshers.
Contact Us Today
Are you looking for more information on running a safe workplace? OSHA provides a wealth of free safety compliance resources online. And if you’re on the hunt for new employees who are committed to working safely, get in touch to learn about TekCom’s telecommunications and network infrastructure recruitment specialty.