Here is why health and safety training is important
Safety at work is very important. More than 200 people die every year due to accidents at work and more than 1 million get injured. Furthermore, more than 2 million suffer from sicknesses caused by their work. One of the most dangerous industries is the forestry and the odds of getting killed there are 6 times more as compared to a construction site. Prevention of accidents and poor health must be a priority for everyone at work. The employees of any organization are vital and valuable for the future of that particular organization. If you are the manager of a forestry contracting business, you must make the safety of your employees a top priority and must prepare them for the challenges of the job by training them properly.
If you provide health and safety training to the employees, you ensure that the employees do not get sick or injured due to the work they do. The health and safety training also helps to develop a positive, healthy and safe culture where the safe operation of day to day activities becomes natural to them.
The results of health and safety training are not just short term but are rather long term. The employees that undergo the health and safety training will become accustomed to staying safe at work and will ensure that all the safety standards are complied.
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What is training?
Training means helping people to learn how to do something, telling people what they should or (often as important) should not do, or simply giving them information. Training isn’t just about formal ‘classroom’ courses and obtaining ‘tickets’ (certificates) to work.
Within the forestry industry, there are growing concerns about the level of competence and high expectations of newly trained/qualified operators. What makes someone more employable and valued is their experience gained through on the job training & consolidation, and non formal training in the form of ‘continuous professional development’ (CPD).
Your members of staff become more motivated, remain loyal and committed. Management of CPD allows you, the forestry contractor, to attract, recruit & retain the best people. By demonstrating workforce competence your business is given direction and an enhanced image. This is not just about health and safety. Increasingly, clients are demanding evidence of ability to undertake contracts to a suitable quality, and businesses have been shown to benefit from being able to provide this information, by winning contracts over other companies.
Why manage CPD you might ask?
Well, amongst other things, it’s good for business. What counts for CPD, is any subject that you think is relevant to your personal development. A plethora of subjects count towards CPD including courses, seminars, conferences, workshops, full and part time study and other training, etc . However, CPD needs planning. The individual needs to look at his/her weaknesses for example in core skills – what you do well and in a lack of skills, what needs to be improved. The individual also needs to look at opportunities and threats including new trends, any obstacles and changing roles.
Of course, all individuals will also learn, increase their knowledge and skills simply by doing their job; in other words, gaining experience. This is also part of CPD. The fresh-faced new employee with his recently – gained certificates of competence will not usually be able to equal the productivity of a more experienced operator but with support and supervision from his colleagues he will pick things up every day. Be aware, though, that everyone brings something to the process: He might be slow but he might also have learnt a few techniques that make life easier – and safer. Equally, the more experienced, senior colleague may be quick but may also have picked up a few bad habits along the way. This type of give-and-take has been going on in the workplace for ever and is just as valuable now as it has ever been.
CPD could also be used in forming a nationally recognized, auditable and credible structure to acknowledge individual operators training, certification and career progression, a register of Tree Work Operatives. This scheme would have a large advantage if it could be made to happen, but cost would be the main barrier to progress.
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