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Tag Archives: Occupational safety and health

Prevent Sickness and Injury in the Workplace

workplace injuries 2-resized-600When the seasons change,  organizations take a hit with employees calling in sick left and right. It’s easy to catch a bug when working around large groups of people. Depending on the building’s layout, ventilation system and tidiness, there are many variables which contribute to everyone’s health.

According to the Center of Disease Control and Prevention, the flu epidemic is unpredictable but tends to show its face and effect in the fall. When the weather starts becoming colder, people start spending more time indoors. People in close working environments tend to eat lunch at their desk and take less breaks, hoping to avoid the chilly weather outside.   Some  say the best solution is to simply ‘take more breaks & do less work’.  This approach is not the solution that most employers were looking for but, it may actually have some merit.

To work to maintain productivity and healthy workers, here are some tips to prevent catching the flu or any other illness in the workplace.

  1. 1.     Vaccination.
    When it comes to the flu, getting vaccinated is generally seen as the most effective precaution one can take. The flu has been evolving and changes from one year to the next. It is important to get the vaccine every 12 months to protect yourself from the most recent form of the flu. Most workplaces have free vaccination organized for the employees. The more people who are vaccinated, the less likely the flu will spread.
  2. 2.     Stress
    Another way to prevent illness is creating  an active and stress free environment at work. Offices that involve regular physical activity increases the immune system and decreases stress. Moderate physical activity for at least 20 minutes a day or intense activity for 30 minutes a day can make a big difference. Having positive relationships with coworkers also decreases stress. Outside variables such as cigarette smoking, poor diet and lack of exercise also affect a person’s stress level and general well-being.

The Cost of the Flu on Business
Sick leave is a financial issue that every organization has to deal with. It is extremely costly to pay for employee who take the sick leave. The flu alone costs businesses $10.4 billion in costs. Even employees don’t want to take the sick leave as a recent study conducted in Australia shows that on average, 88% of employees who attend work whilst sick are less productive.

Work and Injury

Work-related injuries are common and a threat, whether you work in an office or on a building site. In Western Australia alone, roughly 68,500 people experience a workplace injury in the past year. Interestingly enough, most injured workers are men. Workplace health and safety programs are common among all businesses to prevent these injuries from occurring. These programs remind employees of hazards and ways to prevent illness and injury. Keeping office exits and nearby traffic zones clear decreases the chance of a future workplace injury from occurring. These guidelines should be implemented into a workplace health and safety program.

One of the most effective ways to prevent illness and injury in the workplace is forming  a clean and organized environment. A clean office place can also give a professional image that serves its occupants.  Organizing clutter at workstations can create a more productive environment. In reverse, lack of dusting can lead to airborne dust and in return,  ignites allergy symptoms in workers.

To maintain cleanliness and in extension a healthy environment, professional movers can be brought in to move or take away large, heavy objects like furniture or boxes. Having surface cleaners at hand motivates employees to clean up after spills and crumbs. Common areas are hot spots for germs and can easily be safe by cleaning regularly. In some instances, it is best to leave these large and detailed jobs in the hands of professional cleaners.

Sharon Freeman is a professional freelancer who writes and about cleaning services and reviews companies such as http://cleangroup.com.au/

 

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Managing Your Office: Success Stems from Well-Planned Space

Real estate can be one of the biggest costs to any business and for many companies the thought of expanding can be something that is out of the question. Instead of paying out more for larger premises you may need to make the most of what you already have so a little re-organisation of your floor plan may be needed. One way that you could make use of the space available to you is by partitioning sections to make new rooms to use. Creating partitions however is more than just a case of putting up some new walls and there can be quite a lot to be taken into consideration.

Safety

Often overzealous health and safety restrictions are much maligned in business and commerce and are often at the butt of jokes. The thing is though that some health and safety regulations are genuinely needed otherwise people could genuinely be at risk of sickness of injury and this needs to be accounted for when building a new partition. Blocked passageways could present an obvious risk and the risk of fires breaking out should never be neglected. Most safety aspects are common sense although if you are unsure a list of guides and regulations will be easy to obtain if needed. With health and safety taken into account when building a new partition you can help make sure that people are not hurt and also that you don’t have any problems with litigation.

Comfort

Depending on where you have built your new partition you may need to take peoples’ comfort into account as comfort is importance for happiness and productivity. Office workers sat in a cold warehouse partition will soon begin to complain and it is unlikely that much work would get done. Other factors such as noise could also be something that could affect productivity negatively and sound proofing and acoustics may be needed to create a suitable working environment.  When trying to create a suitable environment within the partition the experts should have plenty of valuable advice that will help you to achieve what you want.

Space is also important for comfort in addition to health and safety so make sure that you are not trying to cram too much into too small a space. When planning your floor space you could use computer software such as CAD that will make it easier for you to see how your design will work. With the help of some handy software you could create a comfortable environment that anybody would be happy to work in.

Something else to be taken into consideration is light and nobody would want to work in a dark and dingy office all day long. While artificial lighting can help to brighten up any space it just is not the same as natural light so try to make sure that windows are available wherever possible. If there are no windows available but you are still near an external wall then you should consider having windows installed as they can help to make the room a much happier place and therefore much more productive.

Security

There are some areas that you would probably not want everybody to have access to so security might also be a consideration. Server rooms in particular may need to be kept behind locked doors so that sensitive information cannot be accessed or maybe you would rather just restrict access to prevent large numbers of people passing through and disturbing the people working there. From simple locks to impenetrable defences you have just what you need to create a space that suitably keeps the contents inside safe from harm and disturbance.

Industrial partitions could help you to make the most of the space that you already have and could help to avoid increasing your real estate expenses.

 

 

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Interior Space Planning For Your Office

From desks to coat hangers, it is highly important to ensure that each item of furniture in your office is placed appropriately. Not only so your office looks great for any potential clients but also so that your workforce can work efficiently.

Appropriate office furniture looks professional; it puts employees in work mode, and boosts productivity which in turn boosts profits it also shows customers that you are running a professional business. Here are more reasons why interior space planning for your office is important.

Office furniture

Office workers often complain of bad backs and strain injuries, therefore having the right type of furniture in your office is highly important. The most comfortable looking chairs can often be the ones that cause bad posture; something that results is repetitive strain injuries.

While it’s wise to choose office furniture that is stylish it is also important to take the functionality into consideration. Mesh office chairs are comfortable and lightweight so make for great office furniture.

Staff room

If you supply a staff break room it is important to make the design different from the office area. This is so that employees can distinguish between a rest break and work time. Also ensure that the furniture in the staff room is comfortable. This is so employees can return to their des feeling refreshed and ready to work again.

First impressions

The first impressions of your company are the difference between them purchasing your goods or services or taking their custom elsewhere. Show visitors that you mean business and you are professionals. If your office space is a mess then your visitors will take note of this and will see it as tough you have an unorganised work force.

Eliminate hazards

When it comes to interior space planning one of the main concerns you should have is safety. It is important to eliminate hazards such as wires running along the floor. It is also highly important not the block fire exits. Blocked fire exits are also in breach of health and safety regulations.

Storage

For nearly all office based businesses storage is highly important. Make sure you work sufficient storage facilities into your planning ideas. Under desk storage is a great way to organise employees and clear up desk space.

When choosing storage think about usability. You will need to locate files quickly whenever they are needed; have labelled folders in organised cupboards for maximum efficiency.

Jade works on behalf ofhttp://www.missionworkplace.co.uk/ coming up with efficient interior space planning for offices.

 

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Top 5 Tips To Improve The Office Environment

Many people think that those who work in an office have it easy but only those people who sit in that same place for 8 hours a day know how difficult it can be, mentally and physically. Therefore it is vital that the environment in the office is the best it can be.

Here are the top 5 tips to improve the office environment:

Organisation

Organisation is an integral part in ensuring that your business runs smoothly. Therefore have procedures in place to designate tasks and handle paperwork. Monthly planner display boards are great for having a visual on the tasks that have been delegated to different members of staff. For larger companies CRM systems are a form of organising tasks electronically.

Ensure that paperwork is filed and stored so that it can be accessed easily and quickly.

Refreshments

If your staff are sitting in the same place staring at a computer screen for the whole duration of the day then it is important that they have ‘rest breaks’ where refreshments are available for them throughout the day. Their brain will need to be kept active so having hot and cold drinks is important. Dehydration will have an effect on their productivity. The law for rest breaks is 20 minutes for every 6 hours work.

Comfort

Office workers are known to suffer from back problems. Repetitive strain injury (RSI) is an injury of the musculoskeletal and nervous system. This can cause long term pain and health problems, therefore it is vital that your staff are comfortable at their desk. Ensure that the mouse wire is long enough so that staff don’t have to stretch for it and that the chair height and seating position can be adjusted for optimum comfort. Foot stools and arm rests can also be added.

Space

The office space can have a great effect on the atmosphere in your office. An office fit out company will ensure that desks and other furniture are arranged so that space is utilised effectively. They will also ensure that you have enough storage for your business requirements.

Reward

It is important that your employees are rewarded. People are more than likely encouraged to work harder if they know there will be a reward for their hard work. There are many ways in which you can reward your staff, anything from staff bonuses to afternoon cakes on a Friday afternoon will make a difference.

All of the above tips will ensure that your office environment is the best it can be and if you put in place any of the recommendations you are bound to notice an improvement in productivity.

Jade is employed at an online markeing company in Birmingham she enjoys blogging about various topics from health and safety to gardening.

 

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Keeping Your Office Clean

The workplace is a common breeding ground for illness. Often enough, when one person falls sick, the disease makes its way across the office, making almost everyone else sick, one after the other. It’s important at times like these to remember that the health and safety of employees at work is the responsibility of the employers.

For example, professional cleaning services, provide expert service in office cleaning that not only leave the space visibly clean but also disinfect and provide protection against harmful viruses and bacteria. Services like these are commonly employed for general upkeep of space, be it office or personal. It makes things more convenient as they employ individuals with the required specialisation for the job. They use the right equipment and know how to clean and sanitise without causing the damage that an amateur attempt might.

Your local cleaning service for instance, will have a network of local employees who work in teams. They will come with the expertise of being able to offer advice and guidance about what their clients require. Furthermore, you will find that their services will span the range of cleaning offices, homes, hotels, pubs, clubs and even specialised high pressure cleaning for outdoor areas like car parks, refuse areas, walkways, drives,  gutters and so on. They even offer window cleaning, recycling and waste management services.
Accessing Staff
Most cleaning services staff are trained beforehand at their Health and Safety Department. Before employing one it’s important to check if they have training in basic Health and Safety but also in the more specialised aspects of Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH), Electric and Manual handling and Risk Assessment, among others.

Eco-friendly Materials
For the eco-friendly, cleaning services also provide services where the products and equipment used are all environmently-friendly.
It pays to invest in employing a cleaning service for work as that’s an investment in a usable, clean office space. Ultimately what matters is a hygienic, bacteria-free office, because that means lower illnesses and better productivity.

Flexibility
The fact that you are able to arrange an appropriate time with the company in question to pay you a visit at a time that suits you best. If you prefer as many companies do now a days, that their grounds are cleaned in the morning before the staff arrive in the morning or in the evening after staff have left the office for the day.

Making use of professional cleaning services means you can relax, knowing that the cleanliness and hygiene in your office is in safe hands, leaving you to take care of the more important things.

Priyanka Zaveri is an online marketer and SEO consultant. Priyanka  writes for many online publications, as well as developing content and articles for a variety of well-established websites. Her latest project is writing informative articles on the subject of business cleaning services for the reputable online agency Q7 Cleaning.

 

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