Imagine you’ve just walked into your workplace. Your employees are actively in production. Everything seems to be in its usual working order. A compliance officer comes in and orders an inspection. They find multiple areas that are worthy of a sanction. How did you miss that? How were you not prepared for an inspection of your workplace? Who is to blame here, the employees or yourself?
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, an inspection can happen at any time without warning. The only way to be prepared is to ensure safe workplace conditions and policies that adhere to compliance standards.
Here are five ways to protect your employees and workplace while staying prepared for an Inspection:
- Have a safety plan prepared.
This plan should be reviewed and discussed with employees on a regular basis whether it is done monthly or quarterly. All written agreements such as emergency evacuation plans, assessments, and training information should be made available to all employees and easily assessable. See how you can increase safety and cut back on claims here.
- Conduct Safety Audits
Whether internal or external, a safety audit can act as a dress rehearsal and potentially save time and money. Safety audits not only allow you to address potential risks associated with your work environment, but they also allow you to inform and educate your employees about prior OSHA warnings and the steps taken to prevent and monitor potential unsafe conditions. By conducting audits such as these, your workforce can learn from prior mistakes, which can make an inspection much easier.
- Keep work spaces clean and materials in plain sight
Food and beverages should not be visible in work areas. Maintaining a clean and professional workplace makes an inspection easier for everyone involved. In addition, in case of a fire, you should not have to search for an extinguisher, have all necessary materials in their respective area as listed in your safety plan. Take preventative measures to ensure everyone in your workplace is safe. Learn how you can prevent slip and fall accidents here.
- Keep Workplace Communication Open
Any employee should be prepared to answer questions from an inspector because they have been well trained on a consistent basis. Discussing variables that could take place in an inspection can help to prepare all employees, not just supervisors and managers.
- Review Operations/ Safety Manuals
Manuals that have been provided to instruct inspectors can help to prepare you for any inspection. Learn about the process and check out OSHA’s Field Operations Manual for inspectors here.