“An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest.”-Benjamin Franklin
Job Type Hazard Assessments Early Prevent Cost Responses later.
Companies of all sizes struggle to operate within everchanging regulations while staying viable in a hyper competitive market. Companies who fail to integrate consistent EHS practices into their operations, often find themselves scrambling to comply with an agency request, customer RFP or even a plaintiff’s demand. One simple, yet extremely effective, practice that could save have avoided costly damage control is Job Type Hazard Assessments (“JTHA”).
A robust EHS management system should look at every job. Identification of the basic operational requirements, noncompliance risk and employee work hazards are critical to EHS management. Once identification is complete, you can determine the amount and type of required training and PPE. This identification process is more than checking a box. It is a position-by-position review to ensure every employee knows their job expectations and how to do the job right. The goal of a JTHA should be to clarify employee expectations for that job and to provide a risk review that helps develop a narrative about each type of job in your company.
JTHA and PPE Assessment
Often, a JTHA is created in conjunction with a PPE assessment. It should always involve direct feedback from the employees whose job you’re assessing. The JTHA identifies tasks, sets expectations and illustrates the operational side of the job in a more thorough and exacting manner than a standard job description. Laying this out in a document, as part of an onboarding package, helps demystify the job for new employees. It is a great tool to instill confidence in your SOP (Standard Operating Procedures) for onboarding safety-ready employees.
Include a Risk Assessment – OSHA requires one
The JTHA should also cover the risks associated with the job. It is already a basic OSHA requirement that each employer assess the risk of the workplace – a JTHA can help you demonstrate your compliance with this requirement. For example, by identifying the hazards and risks associated with operating certain equipment or visiting customer locations, a company can create a hazard awareness in its workforce. Identifying each of the steps the company has taken to mitigate those hazards, including specifically delineating what PPE each job type needs, can go a long way to helping manage risk.
Share the JTHA with your Employees
The final, critical step of the JTHA is to share it with your employees, particularly new hires. For existing laborers, it is a terrific way to level-set expectations and solicit valuable feedback. Sharing the JTHA with the affected employee is an effective way to manage changes to enhanced EHS practices and policies. By the way, calling for all employees to sign their JTHA is a best practice. It provides documentation every employee is aware of their job responsibilities, risks, required training and necessary PPE for their job type. This can also be an incredibly powerful thing to share with your insurance carrier to demonstrate your commitment to reducing risk and making your employees hazard aware.
JTHA Costs Little But Has a High ROI
A JTHA is a low-cost investment in both your employees’ safety and the success of the business. Companies that develop clear and concise JTHA’s have more consistent compliance, fewer surprises and significantly reduce their risk. Without organizational alignment, management visibility and an informed and educated workforce, a company can never fully achieve EHS excellence. A JTHA is simple practice that help makes this happen and it is something that any size company can implement to drive value directly to the bottom line.