‘I’m just trying to run a business!’
‘Implementing all this is going to cost me lots of money!
Health & safety is just about common sense.’
These comments often crop up when speaking to small business owners who are seeing increased growth in their business and are at the stage when their legal responsibilities really kick in. And yes absolutely it is about applying common sense, but that only truly works when people have received training and have the understanding to do their job properly and safely (without cutting corners).
Work-related accidents (it can be more than a paper cut) can result in either a formal investigation and/or a claim, and justifying the situation by explaining it was lack of common sense won’t be enough. You don’t need to wrap staff in cotton wool! But businesses with 5 or more people need to demonstrate they’ve put in place measures to protect their staff and others - clients, visitors, etc.
Putting into place the main requirements can result in some cost but prioritise what’s urgent and create an action plan. Overall whatever the financial outlay compare this to: Paying out large sums in the event of a claim and/or a fine, increase in staff turnover, etc. Health & safety isn’t about creating obstacles. It’s just about getting the balance right.
If you know you need to prepare your health and safety arrangements but unsure where to start contact firstname.lastname@example.org.