For businesses there are many rules and regulations which need to be followed. While some may like to think ‘rules are made to be broken’, managers in most sectors know that, in fact, the opposite is true – there are management regulations such as health and safety which every general manager will need to follow and apply for effective and compliant workforce management.
Health and safety at work is of course a vital area for all sectors. In 2015-16 30.4 million working days were lost due to work-related illness and workplace injury (Health and Safety Executive) and 72,702 injuries to employees reported under RIDDOR (Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013).
The overriding aim of health and safety regulations is to protect the interests of individuals, organisations and society. Examples in the news are regularly to be found in the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) bulletins where firms have not complied with safety rules with often tragic consequences for their workers and employees, and many facing huge fines as well as a result.
All this goes to show the importance of being on top of management regulations which apply nationally ‘across-the-board’, and specifically to your sector. There are a number of national bodies responsible for regulating different aspects of a sector e.g. the HSE is the national independent regulator for health and safety in the workplace but other bodies may at the same time regulate other areas of a sector. For example, the Local Authority is responsible for some areas of sectors such as catering services, construction, cosmetic services, holiday lets etc.
All employers have a duty to ensure the health, safety and welfare of their employees as set out in the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 (HSWA) and associated legislation.
Some of the key requirements of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 include:
- Having a written health and safety policy in place.
- Appointing an adequate number of ‘competent’ persons who have the appropriate qualifications or experience.
- Carrying out ‘suitable and sufficient’ risk assessments.
- Providing the ‘information, instruction and supervision’ necessary to ensure the health and safety of employees and others.
There are also important regulations governing the licences and qualifications needed – whether it’s a forklift licence (Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998), professional accreditation or a medical check, it’s easy to overlook these details.
Managers also need to be aware of the body of employment law which aims to protect workers from stressful environments. For example, the Working Time (Amendment) Regulations 2007 define holidays, rest periods and maximum working hours for your employees. (If you’d like more information on the background to current WTR regulations click here).
While SMEs may find it challenging to keep up with management regulations, it’s important to abide by these regulations for the sake of your employee’s well-being and for the firm’s reputation – ultimately it could even cost you your business if you are falling seriously foul of vital regulations. That’s why it’s important to invest in capabilities which help you manage your business, and its staff, more effectively.
You can even use successful compliance milestones for morale-boosting celebrations: for example the construction industry regularly monitors and then celebrates significant numbers of ‘construction worker hours’ achieved without reporting any injuries to employees under RIDDOR – the construction giant MACE used this strategy in their recent Shard building project where the project logged a million RIDDOR-free hours, a great feat for the highest building ever delivered in the UK.
The Chronologic Workforce Management System can help you stay on top of management regulations
With the HR Module you can:
- Monitor hours for Working Time Regulations.
- Receive various alerts.
- Schedule in licence renewal reminders.
- Have instant access to fire roll calls in the case of on-site emergencies.
- Accurately account for hours worked to celebrate health & safety milestones e.g. under RIDDOR.
Use a host of features to help you comply with health and safety regulations. Far from simply recording clocking-in and out times, the Chronologic Workforce Management System has additional capabilities – these enhanced features will help managers and HR teams to keep up to date and compliant.