The aim of this report is to make better understanding about the health and safety legislations at the workplace and its importance for the employers. Health and safety concerns are major issues in the organizations that can generate different impact to the operational activities of the organization in big manner. In the developing business environment, the government has been developed several laws to protect health of the employees at the workplace and provide a safe working environment. In this concern, the report is also describing different causes of adopting these health and safety laws by the employers.
Health and safety legislation at the workplace
Health and safety regulations play an essential role in providing a safe and protective environment at the workplace. In a safe and healthy working environment, the employees can work in competent manner towards the organizational objectives. In this concern, it is a big responsibility for the employers to provide a safe and healthy environment for their employees and reduce the causes of injuries and death at the workplace (Law et al., 2011). There are several laws related to occupational health and safety that must be followed by the employers to ensure that their employees have access to health surveillance and health services. These ACT and legislations are as below:
- Occupational health and safety (OHS) Act 2004
- Equipment (public safety) Act 2005
- Dangerous Goods Act 1985
- Road Transport (Dangerous Goods) Act 1995
- Mines Act 1958
- Workplace injury, rehabilitation and compensation Act 2013 (Victorian Trades Hall Council, 2018)
- Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) 1991
These legislations must be considered by the employers to ensure a safe and healthy working environment. The health and safety legislations are required for employers and all other parties who are involved in the working practices to protect them from risks and other harmful injuries. These laws impose a duty of care for the employers, self-employed individuals, manufacturers, suppliers and importers to develop safe and healthy working practices to reduce the possibilities of injury and accidents at the workplace (Preibisch and Otero, 2014). As per these laws, the employers must ensure that they are not exposing the individuals to health and safety that are arising from the working practices.
From the above statistical data, it is analyzed employee health and safety is the major issue at the workplace that have influenced to the working efficiency of the organization and well being of the employees. The employers can reduce these issues through implementing the health and safety laws in the organization and improve the organizational efficiency in proper manner.
Causes to follow the health and safety laws at the workplace
There are several causes that forces the employers to have proper focus on occupational health and safety laws the workplace. These causes are discusses as below:
As per Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005, there is a requirement for the employers to manage and conduct the working activities in better manner to ensure health, safety and wellbeing of the employees. The employers can carried out the risk assessments at the workplace through making proper control on operational activities. In addition, the employers can reduce the legal issues generated during the accidents and unwanted circumstances through implementing the laws of occupational health and safety (Health and Safety Authority, 2018). It is analyzed that the manufacturing organizations are facing several legal issues regarding the employee health and safety. In these organizations, the pollution generated during operational activities is becoming the cause of illness and death in the workers. Due to these causes, the workers can take a legal action against the employer and can claim for high remuneration. These issues can impact on financial position and market image of the company. In a case of Victorian Company, the company was fined by $260,000 for failing to address known safety hazards after burning a man badly at Keon Park (OHS, 2018). Many of the regions have been imposed the occupational health and safety laws as obligatory laws for the organizations to operate the business activities without any concern in the region. In this concern, legal issues from the side of employees are considered as major cause of implementing health and safety laws at the workplace.
It is analyzed that injuries and illness of the employees influences to the financial position of an organization. The employers can face a big loss from the employee injury at the workplace. In 2016-17, approx 5.5 million estimated working Days are lost by the employers in UK due to workplace injuries in the employees. Due to loss of these working days, the employers got cost of £14.9 billion in a year. As well as, the employers got additional cost of £9.7 billion annually for long latency illness such as cancer in the employees. In addition, the employers faced an annual cost of £5.3 billion due to workplace injuries in 2015-16 (HSE, 2017). In this concern, it is analyzed the employees cannot work properly at the workplace, which may lead to high cost. According to Santos et al., (2013), the organizations can face financial and human resource cost due to a risky and unhealthy working environment. The employees cannot work properly with the organizations. In lack of occupational health and safety policies, the employers will get increased cost of employee turnover and less output. Under the financial cost, the employers can get loss of output and other payment modes. These costs will influence on the financial position of the company and increase total cost of the operational activities. In addition, the human resource cost will cover financial valuation provided to grief, pain, suffering and death. Therefore, the occupational health and safety laws enable the employers to reduce financial and human resource costs.
In this concern, it is analyzed that the employers can face a heavy financial loss in lack of occupational health and safety regulations. These financial losses or financial causes’ forces the employers to follow the legislatives related to employee safety and health at the workplace. The employers can improve their internal capabilities of attaining the objectives in desired manner. In a safe and healthy environment, the employees will retain for long term and work intentionally at the workplace to attain the organizational objectives in desired manner (Nahrgang et al., 2011). As well as, the employers can reduce the financial and human related costs through proper implementation of occupational health and safety laws at the workplace develop a healthy workplace for the employees as a healthy environment leads to healthy employee and improved productivity of the organization.
Moral is also an essential element and cause of focusing on workplaces. Moral obligation is an essential tool of making relationship between the employees and employers. Moral obligation includes loyalty, caring and respect of an employee. The respected and caring employees work with better efforts towards the organizational objectives (Lundgren and McMakin, 2018). A good moral is helpful for the employers to improve job satisfaction and well being of the employees. The employers can develop a good moral at the workplace and make better relationship with the employees through establishing a healthy and safe working environment. In other words, a safe and healthy working environment is helpful in establishing employee morale at the workplace. According to Pauly et al., (2012), moral is an ethical cause at the workplace that must be resolved by the employers improve the strengths and capabilities of the organization to attain the goals and objectives in effective manner. Fair pay and good working condition is not enough for the organizations to attain business objectives, there must be genuine and continuing concerns at the workplace for employee well-being. In this concern, the employers must communicate with the employees to find out the issues of health and risk at the workplace to take an appropriate decision to reduce this health and risk issue at the workplace. These efforts will enable the employers to reduce the moral issue at the workplace and develop confidence in the employees towards the organizational objectives (Gallagher, 2011). As well as, the employers can improve job satisfaction in the employees through having proper focus on health and safety concerns at the workplace. In this concern, moral is also considered as a major cause to have attention health and safety concerns at the workplace.
The implemented health and safety regulations present the reputation of an organization among the competitive firms. In this concern, the reputation of an organization also depends on the implemented organizational policy towards the employee health and safety at the workplace. The employers can attract the capable and experienced employees who have intention to work in a safe and healthy working environment (Dierynck et al., 2017). For instance, if an employer is not focusing on working environment than the employee will discuss about this to other which will influence the reputation of the organization in the market. On the other hand, better health and safety policies will improve the reputation of the organization among the employees and market. In this concern, reputation is a major cause which forces the employers to have proper focus on developing a safe and healthy environment at the workplace.
Employee well-being as a focal point for the employers
According to Shuck and Reio (2014), employee well-being is a focal point on which the employers must have proper focus. A happy and healthy employee will work towards the organizational objectives with full intention. The employee well-being directly affects to thinking and feelings of the employees and their performance at the workplace. The well-being can influence to the behaviour of the employees, which will directly impact their behaviour at the workplace. The health of the employees is also depended on their well-being at the workplace. The employers can confidently move the needle on health outcomes through understanding the pattern of employee behaviour and implement appropriate tactics to change their behaviour. In this concern, it is essential for the organizations to consider the well-being of the employees while taking the business decision. Employers can improve their working capabilities through improving the well-being of the employees (Seiger and Wiese, 2011). As well as, they can improve the confidence in the employees through improving well-being in better manner. In this concern, employee well-being is a focal point for the employers to attain the competitive advantages and attain the business objectives in desired manner.
From the above discussion, it can be concluded that the occupational health and safety laws have been played an essential role in establishing a safe and healthy working environment for the employees. The employees can work confidently in a safe and healthy environment. It is also analyzed that the major causes of adopting the occupational health and safety laws are legislative causes, financial causes, moral causes and reputational causes. These causes forced the employers to have proper focus on development of a safe and healthy working environment. In addition, the employers can also consider employee well-being as an element of improving employee health at the workplace. In order to develop health and safe working environment the employers must consider these occupational health and safety laws in the organizational policies. The employers can also improve their internal capabilities and reduce the financial and human resource costs generated from illness of the employees at the workplace. In this concern, it is analyzed that the occupational health and safety laws are helpful for the employers in improving the efficiency of their human resources to attain the organizational objectives in desired manner.
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