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Tools and resources

The tools and resources on this page can help employers to establish and maintain effective injury prevention and management to improve health and safety outcomes for your workers.

There are multiple factors that influence the effectiveness of your work health and safety and injury management systems, including:

  • your employees
  • your organisation's safety culture and safety management systems
  • the type of hazards in your workplace
  • how your business manages risks.

Consultation with employees

Consultation between employer and workers is a legal requirement under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 (the WHS Act), and an essential part of managing health and safety risks.

A safe workplace is more easily achieved when everyone involved communicates with each other to identify hazards and risks, talks about health and safety concerns and works together to find solutions. By drawing on workers' knowledge and experience, more informed decisions can be made about how to carry out work safely.

Effective work health and safety consultation also has other benefits:

  • greater awareness and commitment – workers who have been actively involved in how health and safety decisions are made will better understand the decisions.
  • positive relationships – understanding the views of others leads to greater cooperation and trust.

Safety culture

Safety culture embodies the value placed on safety and the extent to which people take personal responsibility for safety in an organisation. A positive safety culture means a safer, healthier and more productive workplace. Like any aspect of an effective business, growing a positive safety culture requires a commitment of time, resources and focused actions.

Find out more about safety climate and safety culture

Hazards

Identifying hazards in the workplace involves finding things and situations that could potentially cause harm to people. Hazards generally arise from the following aspects of work and their interaction:

  • physical work environment
  • equipment, materials and substances used
  • work tasks and how they are performed
  • work design and management.

How to identify hazards:

  • inspect your workplace – walk around and observe your workplace on a regular basis. Look at how things are done, how people are working, how equipment is used and predict what could or might go wrong. Identify what is safe or unsafe as well as the general state of housekeeping. Make a list of all the hazards you can find, including the ones you know are already being dealt with, to ensure that nothing is missed.
  • consult your workers - ask your workers about any health and safety problems they have encountered in doing their work and any near misses or incidents that have not been reported. Worker surveys may also be undertaken to obtain information about matters such as workplace bullying, as well as muscular aches and pains that can signal potential hazards.
  • review available information – look at what information about hazards is available from regulators, industry associations, unions, technical specialists and safety consultants. Analyse your own history of:
    • workers' compensation claims
    • health monitoring
    • workplace incidents
    • near misses
    • worker complaints
    • sick leave
    • the results of any inspections and investigations to identify hazards.

    If someone has been hurt doing a particular task, then a hazard exists that could hurt someone else.

You should also review existing Codes of Practice. These codes are practical guides to achieving the standards of health, safety and welfare required under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 and the Work Health and Safety Regulation 2011.

Resources

Last updated
06 April 2017

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Every year children are seriously injured or killed in home-based workplaces because safety has been overlooked or risks have not been controlled with kids in mind.

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Workers who get back to safe work as soon as possible recover more quickly than those who wait until they are fully recovered.

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