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Balancing Workplace Safety & Deadlines for Occupational Workers

November 26, 2020
July 23, 2021
Published 
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Every employee, manager, small business owner, and corporate CEO knows the stress that comes with trying to adhere to strict deadlines. For a company, long-term profitability rests on being able to regularly and habitually meet deadlines. Whether you run an office-based business and are trying to put together an important financial report for your business, or manage a manufacturing warehouse and need to complete an important end-of-year order, meeting deadlines is a challenge that every business faces. 

Unfortunately, falling behind schedule inevitably happens, even with the most well-structured and organized businesses. Missed deadlines occur for a number of different reasons, and certainly affect the economic wellbeing of your company. According to a recent article in Forbes Magazine, “the problem of missing deadlines could be caused by a company outgrowing its software and systems for manufacturing, project management, CRM, inventory management, etc. Perhaps employees feel managers don’t care about deadlines because managers don’t know deadlines are being missed. Small companies can fall into this trap as easily as big ones if they are growing rapidly or have changed their business model.”

Updating your software and streamlining business practices are all good ways to help your business habitually meet its deadlines. However, when business picks up and deadlines approach, it is extremely important for your company to implement deadline management for safety. When deadlines, cutoff dates, and time limits are encroaching, a common response for many workers and managers is to do everything they can to get caught up. This can lead to late nights at work, heavy overtime hours, and even circumventing certain safety policies and procedures in order to save time. 

If your company seems to be facing constant deadlines at work, developing a work deadlines safety protocol can be an essential element in developing a safe workplace environment. Below, we offer a few tips and suggestions for how to better balance workplace safety and deadlines for occupational workers. 

Top 3 Tips for Balancing Workplace Safety and Deadlines for Occupational Workers 

Tip #1: Put a Limit on Hours Worked per Day/Week

With deadlines approaching, a common response is to put in extra hours to get the work done. While this might be necessary  occasionally , regularly working late into the night or long work hours can lead to fatigue and tiredness. A tired and exhausted worker is much more prone to suffer workplace accidents. According to one analysis, 13 percent of all workplace injuries can be attributed to worker fatigue. One way to avoid these fatigue-caused injuries is to put a limit on the number of hours worked per day or per week. In times of approaching deadlines, this might require hiring extra, part-time labor. Though this is an extra cost, it could save you money on both overtime payments and potential worker compensation due to injuries. 

Tip #2: Set Realistic Goals

The best way to balance workplace safety and deadlines is to set realistic goals for your workforce. According to Industrial Safety & Hygiene News, “unrealistic timing for tasks leads to compromising quality, which introduces defects that need to be fixed, or worse yet, ignored and have to be addressed later in the project at a higher cost.” Strict, unrealistic goals also lead to compromised safety issues as workers will feel the pressure to get tasks done. Make sure to set credible goals that are based on your true capacity. 

Tip #3: Good Communication Protocols 

Good communication between supervisors, managers, and workers is strongly correlated with positive safety outcomes. Make sure that your managers and supervisors can properly communicate safety protocols within the workplace environment and that workers’ attitudes and behaviors respect these safety protocols. 

Work-Fit  is a leading company that offers onsite injury prevention and management for your workforce. As the nationwide leader in applying sports medicine techniques in the workplace to prevent injuries and increase your companies bottom line, Work-Fit can help your company design and implement effective strategies to help your company create a balance between workplace safety and the need to meet deadlines. Its injury prevention program can help your company put in place a preventive care model that reduces workplace injuries as deadlines begin to approach. 

If you are interested in improving the balance between workplace safety and meeting deadlines in order to better protect your occupational worker´s health and your bottom company's bottom line, contact Work-Fit today to learn about how they can help your team. 


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