The health and safety record of Great Britain is excellent and the envy of the rest of the world. This has been achieved through the use of health and safety practices within workplaces which record and manage risk by identifying, evaluating and putting in place appropriate precautions in the workplace, thereby protecting your business and employees against potential accidents.
The H&SE has taken on the challenge to improve this even further through a new health and safety system strategy called “Help Great Britain work well strategy“.
The chair of the H&SE Dame Judith Hackett said “Too much complexity and bureaucracy has built up around health and safety. We heard many people say that we already have the knowledge to make the themes of the strategy a reality. The message that this is about being smarter – not simply doing more – resonated with our audiences. By keeping things as simple and straightforward as possible we can ensure that all businesses see this as enabling them to be successful and productive. We now need to see real ownership of this strategy – by the many, not just a few. This is not HSE’s strategy; it is for the whole of the system and everyone in it.”
Six New Priority Health and Safety Themes
The H&SE want to focus on six new health and safety themes over the next five years. This will not be at the expense of what has already been achieved, but will build on what has been done well. The areas identified are those where the greatest improvements can be made.
These themes are aimed at bringing a renewed emphasis on improving health in the workplace, as well as building on the highly successful track record of health and safety in the UK.
The themes are:
Promoting broader ownership of health and safety in Great Britain.
Health and safety should be part of everyone’s role, not just localised to a particular individual or part of an organisation. This means engaging everyone, as everyone shares in the responsibility for health and safety. Everyone has a vital role in managing risk and preventing damage. The Acting Together strategy needs to encourage others to take ownership and to reach out to those who may not have shown any interest in health and safety in the past.
Tackling Ill Health
Highlighting and tackling the costs of work-related ill health.
Work-related illness is a problem across all industries. In fact an estimated 1.2 million people who worked in 2014/15 were suffering from an illness they believed was caused or made worse by work. Promotion and understanding of the costs and preventability of work-related ill health should help kick-start a drive to improve health outcomes within the workplace. A key part of this theme will be in looking to assess and prevent illness at an earlier stage.
Managing Risk Well
Simplifying risk management and helping business to grow.
Risk management is essential to all businesses and when it comes to health and safety it can mitigate or avoid potential issues and accidents. Ensuring good health and safety practices can reduce sickness absence and lower costs. Risk can be managed by sharing examples of good practice, supported by targeted, relevant advice and information. Health and safety professionals have an important role to play in advising businesses with regards to best health and safety practice (http://www.newbroomtraining.co.uk/consultancy/).
Supporting Small Employers
Giving SMEs simple advice so they know what they have to do.
Health and safety should be important to all businesses no matter what size (big or small). It’s therefore vital that health and safety for SMEs, managing workplace risks, shouldn’t be complicated or costly.
Keeping Pace With Change
Anticipating and tackling new health and safety challenges.
To remain a world leader in risk management, Great Britain needs to continue to anticipate the workplace challenges of tomorrow and to solve them using innovation and new technologies. The HSE’s world-leading research capabilities are already being put to use helping Great Britain, as well as countries around the world, to improve health and safety, as well as better business outcomes.
Sharing Our Success
Promoting the benefits of Great Britain’s world-class health and safety system.
We should also look to share best health and safety practices the world. This in turn can help influence health and safety systems overseas and make it easier for British businesses to expand into new markets and territories. By showcasing Great Britain’s world-class reputation for health and safety there maybe commercial opportunities for selling British health and safety ‘products’ or consultancy.