Costs such as fines and legal fees normally are the focal point when it comes to poor workplace health and safety. And, while financial penalties that are given to businesses are designed to have an impact on them, there are also many different financial costs that impact a business when they ignore the health and safety aspect within their business. If you are concerned about any health and safety aspect within your business by the end of reading this short post, then we recommend getting in touch with a team of health and safety consultants.
First of all, it is crucial that you understand that having a health and safety policy in place is your legal responsibility. Carrying out risk assessments, introducing robust and reliable safety procedures and creating a positive safety culture amongst your employees, are all good first steps to take to cultivating a safe working environment for everyone in your team.
The Direct Financial Costs
Direct costs of health and safety breach or accidents are measurable costs that a business can calculate. The most common costs are as follows:
- Legal fines
- Sick pay
- Employee cover
- Property/equipment repairs
- Financial compensation
The Hidden Financial Costs
There are also hidden costs associated with health and safety breaches or accidents. And, even if they seem like they don’t have a direct financial impact, all of the hidden costs below will have an impact in some way or another.
- Project delays
- Loss of workforce
- Equipment damage
The Loss of Resources and Time
An accident that occurs as the result of a health and safety breach can also cost a business in terms of resources and time. Here are some examples of where resources and time can be lost.
- Sourcing and training a replacement member of staff
- Lost working days
- Legal cases (some can take years to resolve)
- Workplace disruption in general
- Retraining staff
The Cost of Negative PR
Negative PR can lead to a loss of both existing and prospective customers, clients and financial investors. While news of an accident or health and safety breach can quickly spread amongst the industry, the press and media are also likely to find out very quickly, and the story will go around like wildfire, reaching a nationwide audience and negatively painting the business.
Not only can the financial costs of negative PR affect the success of a business, but in many cases, the damage is irreversible. Existing clients are unlikely to want to associate themselves with your business, and potential clients/customers will just look elsewhere and likely choose a competitor.
A poor health and safety record will also make it difficult to hire quality and skilled members of staff. After all who is going to want to work for a company who do not exercise a satisfactory level of health and safety in the workplace?
What Are the Benefits of Having a Health and Safety Policy in Place?
If you have a good health and safety policy in place, not only will this reduce the risk of accidents occurring in the workplace, but your business will also see the following 4 benefits.
Protect your Team
Having an effective health and safety policy will help you protect your team from injury. This may mean you are more likely to retain skilled and dedicated employees.
Good health and safety measures will help you to build a positive reputation with your clients and team. The good public relations that your company can receive could help to increase sales and generate more leads and ultimately increase profitability.
Productivity and Profits
Having effective health and safety measures in place means that your employees can do their work safely and efficiently. This will boost morale amongst the team and increase productivity.
Reduce Team Absences
Having an effective health and safety policy within the workplace means that employees are less likely to take sick leave as a result of an accident at work.