5 tips for encouraging team members to engage with safety compliance

safety compliance

5 tips for encouraging team members to engage with safety compliance

A safety compliance plan is only as good as the team that follows it. Designing and implementing a safety compliance program is a great start to creating a safer work environment, but without team member engagement only half the work is done. Fostering a culture of safety and compliance engagement is key to creating a safe, efficient and compliant workplace. 

Our top 5 tips for encouraging team compliance are:

  1. Make team compliance part of your culture
  2. Lead from the front with positive reinforcement
  3. Treat safety and compliance challenges as learning opportunities
  4. Create a sense of safety compliance ownership
  5. Create communication opportunities

1. Make team compliance part of your culture

Safety compliance should be so deeply imbibed in your company culture that it’s part of the furniture. Safety and compliance shouldn’t be afterthoughts or add-ons but a core company value around which you base your everyday actions. Businesses of all kinds can foster a culture of safety compliance in a number of practical ways including:

  • Providing regular safety updates and reports, including year-on-year and month-on-month improvements

  • Including daily safety and health rituals as part of your regular routine, for example stretch breaks, mindfulness exercises and daily safety reminders

  • Providing regular training and refreshers on everyday procedures

  • Displaying safety signage and messaging throughout your workplace

  • Providing training and resources for all aspects of safety including physical, emotional and mental safety

  • Providing high quality team resources like apps, training and learning materials

  • Setting up incentives for team safety compliance, for example a bonus program for employees with excellent safety compliance records

  • Providing positive reinforcement to those who follow safety policies and procedures

safety compliance

Source: Unsplash

2. Lead from the front with positive reinforcement

Leadership teams need to lead the charge on safety and compliance, setting the standard and abiding by all safety policies as an example to other employees. If staff in leadership don’t engage with safety and compliance, encouraging other staff members to engage will be a major uphill struggle. There are a number of practical ways leaders can demonstrate their engagement with safety compliance and encourage team compliance, including:

  • Giving specific praise — Leadership team members should provide specific praise to let staff members know exactly what they’re doing right

  • Providing genuine feedback — Explain in real terms how employees are making a difference with their safety compliance efforts

  • Following through — Leadership team members should provide timely responses to queries and follow through on any promises made

  • Becoming safety experts — Leadership staff need a deep understanding of all company safety policies and procedures and should be able to provide all the answers and resources employees need from them


3. Treat safety and compliance challenges as learning opportunities

No matter how comprehensive your safety plan, accidents can still happen. However minor a safety incident, they should always be taken as opportunities to learn and do better. Rather than seeing incidents as failures or mistakes, see them as opportunities to do better and create better processes for the future by:

  • Avoiding accusation
  • Methodically examining the issue  
  • Identifying opportunities for improvement and growth
  • Involving concerned team members and helping them create a solution

For example, perhaps there’s low PPE compliance among your team. Instead of reprimanding the offending staff members, take a critical look at the problem. Why is compliance low? Is the PPE inappropriate? Could better options be found? Through collaboration with staff meaningful and effective solutions to compliance challenges can be found. 


4. Create a sense of safety compliance ownership

Safety and compliance shouldn’t be something that’s forced onto employees from above, rather team compliance should be something that every team member takes individual ownership of. You can create a sense of safety compliance ownership by:

  • Asking for employee input

  • Giving employees meaningful safety tasks

  • Valuing, recognising and rewarding safety compliance efforts

  • Getting employees involved in decision making processes

  • Providing real-life feedback on safety such as month-on-month and year-on-year safety improvement statistics

  • Reinforcing the genuine impact employee actions have on the workplace

  • Giving opportunities for feedback and providing quick responses

  • Asking employees how they would like to be involved and how they’d like to manage their own safety

team compliance

Source: Unsplash 

5. Create communication opportunities

No-one understands the safety needs of your company quite like your employees. They’re the ones following your procedures and enforcing your policies each day, so who better than your team to provide insight on what is and isn’t working? 

By providing a variety of formal and informal communication channels for staff to discuss safety concerns you’ll not only receive valuable information that will potentially improve your processes, you’ll also encourage greater team member engagement with safety compliance. Communication channels could include:

  • Safety summits

  • Online forums

  • “Suggestion box” style online forms

  • Email

  • Meetings  

It’s important not to wait for employee involvement to happen on its own but to actively seek it out. Reach out to employees, let them know their input is valued and be sure to validate any communications by following up and implementing changes when appropriate. 


Create a culture of team compliance with expert safety management compliance consultancy from the team at BusinessBasics