This article reviews the importance of managing occupational safety and health. It specifically presents the problems or costs associated with poor management of occupational health and safety.
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The main findings show that failure to observe safety and health of workers may result into unnecessary costs like payments for sick employees, administrative, insurance as well as recruitment levies.
An organization can overcome such costs using different strategies such as improving the legislation and implementation of occupational health and safety procedures. Additionally, an organization can develop management systems that reduce the level of risks exposed to workers.
The main arguments presented in this article are geared towards understanding the importance of managing occupational safety and health.
Van Stolk et al., (2012), state that the increasing cases of unemployment in industrialized countries have become paramount concern among members of the public for a relatively long period of time.
According to Bohle and Quinlan (2000), the transition of improved economies characterized by rapid increase in services and automation is seen by many people as a method of evolution that seeks to reduce or eliminate physical jobs associated with numerous risks, safety and health hazards.
There are also costs associated with lack of safety and poor health at workplace. These include increased cases of workers who request to be paid for hospital expenses, costs incurred during administration, compensation for injuries, recruitment costs and insurance remittances.
Apart from the organizational and individual consequences, there are other costs which society is supposed to oversee. This challenge has been worsened by organizations’ failure to observe occupational safety and health among workers.
Some of the examples of these costs include reduced or complete loss of output, increased medical costs, costs incurred by an organization in administering benefits as well as the local authority safety and executive investigation costs (Ferrett, 2012).
The author believes that the costs associated with poor management of occupational safety and health can be eliminated by observing quite a number of measures.
Firstly, there is need to improve the current legislation and implementation of safety procedures. This can be achieved by carrying out non-abiding actions like exchange of appropriate practices, conducting awareness campaigns and increasing the level of training.
Secondly, it is necessary to mainstream occupational health and safety in different policy areas such as education and public health sector. It is also necessary to identify fresh synergies. Thirdly, the national strategies that have been tailored towards specific contexts should be well defined and implemented.
Implementation should also target the enterprises or sectors that seem to be affected more by illnesses and occupational injuries. Such problems can also be eliminated if an organization or individual is able to identify and assess potential risks in the most effective way (Van Stolk et al., 2012).
According to Van Stolk et al. (2012), putting in place management systems that deal with occupational safety and health is a remarkably convenient step towards eliminating the challenges associated with poor occupational safety and health.
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However, it is indeed worthy to ensure that management systems are structured and efficient in such a way that the occupational safety and health of workers are guaranteed.
Thus, when developing these systems, there is a need to involve employees and also undertake proper capacity building and training in various levels of employment.
Finally, in order to make a better analysis of this article, adequate information based on the measures adopted by different organizations for managing occupational health and safety is required.
Such kind of information should relate to the policies of the organization in terms of planning, implementation methods, evaluation, action and improvement procedures.
Bohle, P. & Quinlan, M. (2000). Managing occupational health and safety: A multidisciplinary approach. South Yarra, Vic: Macmillan.
Ferrett, E. (2012). International Health and Safety at Work Revision Guide. New York: Routledge.
Van Stolk et al. (2012).Management of occupational safety and health: An Analysis of the findings of the European Survey of Enterprises on New and Emerging Risks (ESENER). London: European Agency for Safety and Health at Work.