The Bureau of Labor Statistics says that in 2015, there were 155,740 injury cases involving the back. There were 238,610 slip and fall injuries. These are staggering numbers when one considers the efforts most companies have invested into maintaining a safe workplace. In modern times, a multitude of companies have been found liable for injuries sustained in their places of organization. There is a relationship that exists between workplace safety and profitability.
Every company, especially those that are in manufacturing, are constantly thinking of ways to continuously improve their products and processes. They realize that their profits are directly related to the ways and means by which they produce their products. Unfortunately, far too many companies get caught up in the drive for higher profits. Because of this, they have a tendency to allow workplace safety to eventually become an afterthought.
The costs associated with operating a large manufacturing facility in America are astounding. Workplace injuries place a massive burden of expense and weakened productivity on a company. These injuries could be reduced with proper planning and careful attention to detail. Most workplace injuries are preventable. There are a multitude of factors to look at, but maintaining a safe and tidy work area is one of the most ideal ways to prevent injury. Workers, too, have a responsibility in keeping themselves safe from harm.
Workplace injuries place a significant burden on health care providers and insurance companies. As companies continue to pay higher premiums for employee health care, one of the only means available for cost recovery is to increase the prices of the products and solutions they produce. This places the burden of expense on the consumer, and allows companies to ignore the root cause of their workplace injuries. The focus here seems to be on maintaining a healthy relationship with shareholders, and not necessarily on maintaining a healthy workforce.
I have been in some manufacturing plants. The ones that are successful in regards to minimizing injuries have some sore of incentive plan in place. They also have on display the number of consecutive days they have gone without an accident. This is effective because that sign keeps the idea of safety on the workers’ minds.
It is intriguing to note that there are record numbers of jobs, especially in the industrial sector, being sent overseas. There are a number of factors to account for this. One of the most significant reasons is that American companies are able to shave their operating costs down to a fraction of their domestic costs, by capitalizing on cheaper labor in foreign markets. Foreign governments, eager for investment, are all too eager to accommodate the interests of big western business. Far too often, this comes at the expense of workplace safety.
If companies would like to be profitable in the long term, they need to reexamine their approach to workplace safety and the health of their workers. Many companies are sending jobs overseas, in order to take advantage of cheap labor and relaxed labor laws. American companies have the ability to be both profitable and safety conscious. Through directed education campaigns and preemptive planning, workplace injuries can be reduced in a significant way. Remember: a safe worker is a happy worker, and a happy worker is a productive worker.
It will be interesting to see how manufacturing will try to combat the workplace injury issue in the coming years.
If you had a workplace injury, you are entitled to compensation. Contact us today if you need a consultation.