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The Importance of WHS Inductions for Employees

WHS InductionsWhen you think of danger, you probably think of a wild bear or a speeding motorcycle. But the dangers in most workplaces are much more mundane: they include things like tripping over a cable, using cleaning chemicals, or injuries from manual handling. If you think that last example isn’t that dangerous, guess again! In fact, loss time due to lower back injuries amounts to billions of dollars annually. Now if you factor in the economic loss of ALL workplace injuries, the costs are truly staggering.

In this article, we will be discussing why employee WHS inductions are important for protecting your employees and what benefits they can bring to companies.

What are WHS Inductions?

A WHS induction is an orientation for new employees that includes information about workplace safety, as well as general information about the company’s organization and culture. Things that could be covered during a WHS induction include:

  • WHS Policies and Procedures
  • Risk Management Procedures and Tools
  • High-Risk Tasks
  • Emergency Management
  • Incident Reporting

It’s the most basic level of training for all new employees and should be completed before an employee begins work. Inductions don’t have to be boring lectures, either. In fact, they shouldn’t be! An induction is an excellent way to get new employees integrated into the company culture and excited about their work. It also allows companies to provide a glimpse into their history and culture, because nothing is more exciting than the behind-the-scenes history of the company that you work for! By using induction programs to provide both theoretical knowledge and practical hands-on experience, companies can provide employees with the knowledge they need to stay safe while at work.

Why are WHS Inductions Important?

A well-run WHS Induction program is a core component of any WHS Management System. Some industries, like construction, legally require WHS Inductions to be performed. For most industries, there is no explicit legal requirement to conduct inductions. However, a WHS Induction program will help meet other legislative requirements, for example, the legislative requirement to provide adequate information, training, and instruction (WHS Act s(19)(3)e). While it’s difficult to put a dollar value on the benefits of WHS inductions, it’s clear they are a worthwhile investment for companies.

WHS Inductions are essential for new employees, not only to provide the relevant WHS information but also to answer other important questions like:

  • Who do I report to?
  • Where are the restrooms?
  • When are employee break times?

WHS inductions are also important for employee engagement. When new employees are given a safety induction, they are welcomed into the organization and given in a glimpse into the organization’s culture. They are being given the resources and knowledge they need to do their jobs safely and productively.

This is an important step in developing a sense of community among employees. A company that cares about the health and safety of its employees also cares about its community and the environment in which they work. In a world where corporations are often criticized for caring more about profits than people, this is an essential step in building trust with stakeholders, including employees!

Workplace Incident Prevention and Response

No matter the industry, all businesses can benefit from safety inductions in reducing incidents and injuries. With an effective WHS Induction, many incidents can be prevented. For example, a worker might receive respiratory damage from breathing in a chemical simply because they don’t know where the PPE is stored.

Additionally, if a workplace incident does occur, a properly conducted WHS Induction would have provided staff with the information and training they need to respond effectively, for example:

  • Evacuation Plans
  • Emergency Response Procedures
  • Location of Emergency Equipment:
    • Spill Kits
    • Fire Extinguishers, and
    • First Aid Equipment
  • Who to Contact During an Emergency

For these reasons and many more, whs inductions are beneficial for all kinds of workers.

A Summary of WHS Inductions

In the modern workplace, safety is paramount. It is crucial that employees know the rules and regulations that pertain to their jobs, as well as the dangers that they face and how to stay safe. Inductions provide this kind of training.

WHS inductions also allow companies to share their history, culture, and values with new employees while at the same time providing them with the know-how to effectively integrate into their new work groups.

Need help? View our additional services page for information about how we can help you.

For information about construction inductions, view the Workplace induction for construction workplaces – information sheet.

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