Although some jobs are more dangerous than others, every employer is responsible for the safety and well being of their employees in the workplace and one of the best ways they can meet these obligations is to provide first aid training to employees.
First aid training can benefit both employers and employees in a number of ways, some of which might surprise you:
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Now, it may sound obvious, but the most important reason why all workplaces should have first aid training is that it can ultimately save lives. First aid training gives your staff the confidence and ability to react immediately to an injury or incident such as a burn, choking, allergic reaction, loss of breath or a fatal heart attack.
Data from the Health and Safety Executive displays that 142 workers die in the workplace every year, and more than 581,000 sustain an injury. The total cost of lost annual working days to businesses and the economy is estimated to be £15 billion. It is therefore crucial that workplaces train their employees in first aid to prevent these figures from increasing.
Health and safety are critical for maintaining positive perceptions of your brand and companies that take care of their workers are more likely to be viewed favorably by both employees and the general public.
First aid training also reduces the chance of a Health And Safety Executive investigation. Under Reporting of Injuries, Disease and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR), the HSE will be sent to investigate serious employee injuries or deaths at your workplace. The aim of this is to find out if your firm has broken any regulations regarding workplace safety. If your workplace has, then you may be liable for fines and maybe even imprisonment.
Be warned, though: the Health and Safety Executive is not afraid to name and shame organizations that do not obey to minimum standards. It periodically publicizes its findings in its newsletter and on its website, which can be significantly damaging to a brand’s reputation.
Not only can first aid training keep everyone safe in the workplace, but it will also allow employees to stay safe outside of it too. Once learnt, employees will have those skills for life, especially if you maintain ongoing refresher courses. This means they can administer first aid for themselves, their family and perhaps even the public in an emergency.
Prompt first aid can potentially lower the severity of injuries suffered by members of staff. This quick response can massively reduce recovery time, and therefore help employees return to work sooner, meaning less time out of the business and a quicker return to work, with less impact on the business.
By making first aid training available to employees, employers can show their workforce that they care about providing a safe work environment, and this can have a significant effect on morale. However, if they feel that their health is at risk, they will fear injury, have a poor relationship with management, and have higher rates of absenteeism.
Therefore, first aid training is a critical public relations tool. It helps workers feel a sense of confidence and pride in the place where they work. If they know that management is looking after their health, turnover will fall, and motivation will increase. An employer’s dream!
First aid training also helps to foster a sense of community as workers will understand that the people around them are trained to assist, should they fall sick or injure themselves.
Lastly, first aid training can be a fun team building activity for your staff and management. It gives colleagues the opportunity to learn an important life skill together in a group environment outside of work, which can ultimately help form stronger bonds and relationships within the team.
Teams also report more awareness of their co-workers’ well-being once they have completed first aid training, making them look out for each other during work time and bring them closer together.