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Safety In A Bad Economy: Prevention Costs Less In Lives And Dollars

Julie Copeland

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CEO

workplace safety, safety costs, cost of safety, OSHA, workplace safety consulting, workplace safety inspectionsWelcome back to this week’s Arbill blog series “Safety In A Bad Economy.” We hope you’ve found it to be informative.

We began the week with “The Realities Of Reducing Staff And Resources,” exploring the effects of cutbacks and downsizing on workplace safety, from the impact of layoffs to the upkeep of limping equipment. From there, we moved on to “The High Cost Of Cutting Safety Corners,” where we delved into just how expensive these cutbacks actually are, both in regards to your budget and employee’s lives.

For the final installment of this week’s “Safety In A Bad Economy” discussion, we’re looking at how investing in workplace safety protects your budget and has long-term effects on profitability.

An Ounce Of Prevention Is Worth A Pound Of Cure

This famous quote from Benjamin Franklin certainly rings true for workplace safety. According to OSHA, workplaces that establish safety and health management systems reduce their injury and illness costs by 20-40%.

Obviously, those numbers sound great, but what course of action is the most effective to the health of your employees and your bottom line? 

The Safety and Health Assessment and Research for Prevention (SHARP) program conducted a study that examined the Department of Labor & Industries’ (L&I) inspection data and workers’ compensation claims from 1998 through 2008. Here’s what they found:

  • Significant reductions in claims and claim costs following safety inspection/consultation
  • If an inspection resulted in at least one citation, research found a reduction in worker injury claims by as much as 20%

Often it takes a significant event, like a citation from an inspection, to really get everyone’s attention and change behavior, leading to a greater collective recognition of what should be done to reduce hazards. The result is a safer work environment and reduced costs for injury and illness.

Want to calculate your company’s injury costs? By simply filling out a few form fields, Arbill’s Safety Calculator gives you the information you need to help protect your bottom line.

Bust Or Boom: Profit Is Within The Realm Of Possibility!

Most of the conversation surrounding investing in workplace safety centers on savings. The link between safety and productivity is undeniable, however, that suggests something more than savings.

In theory, this is how it works:

Reduced sick pay and compensation claims, reduced absenteeism and staff turnover and improved reputation all have obvious beneficial effects on your business. There’s also a central belief that people just perform better when they are physically and emotionally capable. Job satisfaction leads to higher productivity. Higher productivity leads to profitability. 

Workplace safety initiatives cost something up front, but that doesn’t mean they should be viewed as a “necessary evil.” The bottom line: loss prevention is one of the biggest reasons to ramp up your workplace safety initiatives. Over time you not only save money, you have the potential to increase your profit margins significantly.

Ready to turn prevention into potential profit? Call 800-523-5367 or click on the button below to speak with a safety specialist at Arbill. 

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Topics: workplace safety inspections, workplace safety, OSHA, workplace safety consulting, safety costs, cost of safety

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