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An online safety manual equips employees with the knowledge they need to work safely and avoid hazards of any kind. It is a collection of safety instructions, step-by-step procedures, and best practices on how to use specific tools, machinery or chemicals, without hurting themselves. Fire drills, immediate evacuation, or in case of any other emergency, employees can access the manual and take timely actions to ensure everyone’s safety.
If you care for your employees and want to keep them safe from hazardous events, writing a safety manual is paramount.
If you are still looking for a solid reason, these significant benefits will convince you to build a safety manual for your workforce right away:
Companies operating from the United States must abide by the safety guidelines developed by Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). By not complying with the safety rules of OSHA, you are likely to invite legal troubles and huge fines. Creating a safety manual shows that you follow safe work practices, which further saves you from paying heavy penalties.
Employees are the core of a company. Your whole existence hinges on how well they work and how healthy they are. With safety procedures and best practices clearly explained in the manual, employees are better positioned to handle risky tasks without harming themselves. This prevents risky situations from turning into life-threatening accidents.
A culture of ‘he said, she said’ leads to assumptions, misunderstanding, and confusion. With a safety manual in place, employees have access to all safety procedures and best practices. They know what steps to take when faced with untoward events related to their jobs. This means more accountability and fewer blame games.
Frequent accidents at the workplace and employee complaints can put your brand in a bad light. Equipping employees with an easily accessible safety manual that helps them prevent hazards and stay safe is good for your brand’s reputation. It shows you care for your employees, and they are your topmost priority.
A safety manual template acts as a base and provides you with a good starting point to create a safety manual of exceptional quality. It is a no-fuss, highly effective template that can be tailored to your requirements. With pre-built sections and a ready-made table of contents, your work is reduced to half. While the template takes care of the structure, you can put all your focus towards creating high quality content.
Employee safety is a broad topic, so you need to be really specific as to what you want to include in the manual. Creating a list of topics right at the beginning reduces the chances of missing out on critical information. Depending on the products you deal in - chemicals, machinery, or heavy equipment, you will have to create relevant topics for your safety manual.
OSHA has certain safety standards that organizations must comply with to stay away from huge penalties. Find out what guidelines OSHA has laid out for companies in your industry and ensure that you follow them right from the start. Cover all the topics stipulated by OSHA and do everything required to stay away from lawsuits and fines.
The prime objective of a safety manual is to help employees find the critical information they need right when they need it. Structure has a big role to play here. A well-structured manual directs employees to the right article in just a few clicks. Before you start writing, get a safety manual template, decide how the topics should flow, and then take your next steps.
Since a safety manual is a critical document on which the safety of your workforce depends, it should be created collaboratively by employees. Involve employees in the manual creation process and let them share responsibilities. While some can be authors, others can be editors and administrators. While this assures superior content quality, it also reduces the time taken to build the manual.
Taking regular feedback from employees helps you identify gaps, fix them, and improve the overall quality of the safety manual. As employees are the ones who use the manual, they can provide valuable inputs to enhance your content quality. Add feedback forms asking employees about the effectiveness of each article and providing them the space to submit detailed feedback.
This free safety manual template can be easily modified to match your requirements. It comes with a table of contents, a pre-built article structure, and topic-related categories and subcategories. Start using the template by adding your brand name and logo. Create new categories or use the existing ones - whatever works for you. Write safety-related content, demonstrate steps using images and videos, and get the safety manual ready for your employees.
A safety manual is critical for a safe and sound working environment. That’s precisely why you need to take every step with utmost care and thought. Follow these best practices to level up your safety manual.
Besides written text, a safety manual should have clear diagrams explaining all safety processes. Adding diagrams and flowcharts is a good way to demonstrate each step in a process. When an emergency strikes, employees don’t have the time to go through long paragraphs. With diagrams, it’s easy for them to understand a process and put it into action.
For a safety manual, it is important to get to the point quickly, without beating around the bush. Employees don’t have the time to go through large blocks of text to find a crucial piece of information. Create content that is clear, straightforward, and easy to follow. Keep the paragraphs short, follow a step-by-step approach, and help employees grasp the information quickly.
Think from the employees’ perspective and the kind of help they would need. You can even consult with employees and directly ask them about the safety issues they face at work and the risk involved in using the equipment. Add content that answers all questions employees might have about how to safely use equipment or carry out a process.
Problems don’t come with an invitation. Employees should be ever-ready to handle any safety-related issues that arise at work. A safety manual that can be accessed across devices, especially mobile phones, is a huge help. This means regardless of where employees are and which device they are using, they can conveniently access the manual and prevent any potential accidents.
For employees to get information right at their fingertips, the safety manual should be quick to search. It should have a search bar that displays the right articles matching the keywords used by employees. This Google-like search system is a great help when employees are stuck and need immediate assistance to solve a problem.