New Employees Safety Talk
New employees often are viewed as a liability to a company or job site when it comes to working safely. One study found that employees with less than one month on the job are three times more likely to suffer a lost-time injury than employees with more than a year on the job. While new employees are at higher risk of getting injured, much of that depends on the other employees and the worksite itself.
Benefits of New Employees
A new employee often wants to follow all the safety rules especially if the majority of people on site are following the rules as well. If a new employee observes the other employees working safely they will often want to do the same. New employees also have a fresh set of eyes towards hazards on site and may have experiences of unique lessons learned from previous jobs. That being said, measures should still be taken to ensure these employees are able to and do perform work safely.
Safeguards for New Employees
- Training- Even if a new employee has many years of experience on the job at another company, they still need comprehensive training. The training should cover general information about the job site, how to complete work tasks, hazards of the work, and the company’s safety procedures at a minimum.
- Mentoring- Many companies use some type of mentoring program to ensure that individuals who were recently hired have someone to ask questions and get guidance from. This allows these workers to be more comfortable approaching a more experienced employee with any questions he or she might have.
- Supervision- Newer employees or even just workers completing new tasks need to be supervised. Proper supervision may not necessarily mean an employee’s immediate supervisor. Depending on the task, a subject matter expert or a senior employee may be more beneficial for the supervision of newer employees. Just like mentoring, a newer employee may feel more comfortable and get more out of being supervised by someone else other than their immediate supervisor.
While new employees can be a liability to a company, they also can serve as a great asset to everyone around them. The odds of a new employee avoiding an injury can greatly depend on the individuals around them. Everyone starts somewhere and needs guidance in the beginning. Remember the struggles and important lessons learned as a new employee and pass that knowledge on. Safety on the job is everyone’s responsibility. Watch out for those around you and never hesitate to help out a fellow employee.
- What are significant hazards for a new employee on this job?