Increased productivity can have a direct positive impact on all areas of business. A productivity improvement will result in higher efficiency and better workflow, resulting in business growth and profitability.
However, increasing productivity can be a challenging task in a business that deals with hazardous situations such as when working on construction sites, in extreme weather conditions, or with dangerous chemicals. In such cases, every situation needs to be carefully planned, and the appropriate equipment needs to be sourced.
Otherwise, various issues could arise, such as injuries or illnesses, causing projects to slow down due to understaffing. That’s why it’s essential to choose the appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) to create a safer and more productive environment in dangerous lines of work.
So, if you’re looking for how to increase productivity, but the hazardous nature of your workplace holds you back, read on to discover what you need to know before buying PPE.
How Effective Work Clothing Can Improve Productivity
Every business should maximize job safety, and your employees should have the appropriate workwear that enables them to perform their roles effectively without fear.
Machinery operators, assembly line staff, welders, and those working in extreme weather conditions require adequate work clothing that keeps them safe in the work environment.
That said, if your employees are frequently exposed to elements, they’ll need some water- and wind-proof jackets. If they work as loggers in colder weather, they’ll need some quality work flannels for men. Or if they work in slippery conditions, they’ll need to wear appropriate slip-resistant boots, and so on.
The correct work gear will lower accidents and injuries and reduce the number of sick days. That will, in turn, increase productivity while protecting your company’s reputation.
Choosing the right clothing to wear to work can be challenging. But when your employees wear the appropriate clothes for their roles, it creates a less stressful routine that triggers a positive working mindset.
They’ll arrive at the workplace ready to work with an optimistic frame of mind. That’s because we subconsciously recognize we’re putting on workwear because we’re going to work. However, casual clothing has the opposite effect, leading to a too relaxed approach to work.
Easier identification between the public and employees for those working in customer-facing roles is vital. Your employees can see who to turn to for help, customers know who to communicate with, and workers feel like professionals.
All businesses should aim to deliver a great first impression. And professionally dressed employees are more conscious of their actions and behave according to their roles.
A uniformed workplace is a projection of a workplace where every worker is on the same page. Your employees feel like they are a part of the team and have the same goal.
Increased Productivity and Profits
Providing PPE and other workwear for your employees can be a considerable expense as you’ll have to replace it if it wears out or gets damaged. But in the long run, a safe business is both more productive and profitable.
Safety measures and good health, including the provision of PPE, allow your employees to complete their tasks safely and easily. That, in turn, encourages a positive working environment where workers are motivated.
Maintaining a high standard of safety and health in your workplace lowers other expenses, such as insurance premiums, and will reduce the cost of accidents that aren’t covered by your policy, such as repairs to equipment or production delays.
Providing your employees with adequate PPE and other work clothing may cost you today, but in the long run, you’ll avoid expenses that would otherwise destroy your profit.
What Is PPE?
PPE refers to all equipment intended for employees to wear at work that protects them against risks to their safety or health, such as gloves, safety helmets, high-visibility clothing, eye protection, safety footwear, and safety harnesses. And PPE must meet certain standards. More on that below.
Suited for Purpose
The PPE must be suited for the task your employees are going to wear it for. For instance, low protection workwear won’t offer much help on a construction site. Without adequate protection, such as builders’ grip gloves and safety boots, it’ll be more challenging and dangerous for your workers to complete their tasks.
Suited PPE for a specific work environment is designed to make work safer and easier, increasing efficiency.
Although you’ll want to equip your employees as soon as possible to get your project going, you should put some time in to make sure that the PPE is of high quality.
Low-quality equipment is more likely to fail to provide the protection you require or break after several uses. You’ll then have to source new PPE and wait for it to arrive before you can continue with your project. In more severe cases, low-quality equipment can result in injuries, leading to low staff morale, high staff turnover, and lost time.
Before buying protective equipment to keep your workers safe in their work environment, consider how the clothing will affect their ability to do their tasks.
For example, if a construction site involves climbing ladders or maneuvering around, bulky, clunky safety boots may impede their ability to do their job and reduce productivity. So, you may want to consider lightweight work boots that are easier to move in. Or, if your employees work in hot weather conditions, heavy clothing may cause them to overheat.
That’s why it’s vital to consider the environment and the circumstances your workers will wear that PPE in to ensure you get the appropriate equipment. Although there’s a lot to consider before buying PPE, once you’ve done your research and found the ideal equipment for your workers, it will boost safety, productivity, and efficiency.
Protect Your Workers
Many worksites include hazards you can’t eliminate, regardless of how many safety procedures, training sessions, or control you implement. However, quality PPE can help protect your employees and reduce various injuries:
- Eyes: Goggles, safety glasses, and face shields will protect the eyes from metal or chemical splash, gas, dust, radiation, and projectiles.
- Ears: Employees exposed to high-level noise should use earmuffs, earplugs, or semi-insert ear canal caps.
- Head and neck: Safety helmets, hairnets, and bump caps protect workers from injuries caused by falling objects, chemical splashes, hair getting caught in machinery, and extreme temperatures.
- Arms and hands: Sleeves, gloves, and gauntlets will protect employees from cuts, abrasion, chemicals, extreme temperatures, radiation, electric shock, and other injuries.
- Legs and feet: Safety footwear offers protection from water penetration, falling objects, electrostatic build-up, slipping, cuts, impact, sharp objects, chemical splashes, molten metal, and cold weather conditions.
- Lungs: Respiratory protective equipment (RPE) protects workers from inhaling toxic gases, vapors, and dust and being harmed by oxygen-deficient atmospheres.
- The whole body: Boiler suits, conventional or disposable overalls, aprons, and chemical suits protect against chemical/metal splash, heat, spray from pressure leaks, dust, etc.
Comply with Regulations
To comply with the PPE at Work Regulations 1992, you have to provide adequate PPE to your employees for free. The equipment must be stored correctly and replaced if worn out or damaged. Moreover, you must train your workforce on how to use PPE and inform them about what they need to understand and what you expect from them.
If you fail to do the above, you’ll be left open to personal injury claims. If your workers get injured and state that you haven’t provided them with appropriate PPE or told them how to use the equipment, you may receive a heft fine. And the long-term ramifications on your business could be extremely damaging, affecting your ability to recruit talents or close sales.
Adequate Work Gear Is Vital to Business
PPE is a vital consideration for a business owner. Stay aware of your obligations and provide high-quality equipment that serves its purpose. Also, ensure to train your workers on how to use the equipment.
Note that PPE isn’t a cure-all for every worksite hazard but should be used alongside safety procedures and training.
Ensuring that your employees are safe in their work environment will help improve morale and reduce absences and sick leaves. That will, in turn, help save you money, maintain or increase productivity, and reduce the time for redistributing work.