The ability to implement effective and efficient manufacturing business processes is a must to grow a business. The more quality products or parts manufactured, the faster demand is met to expand the client base. This is all about scaling for success.
But when scaling, some processes like safety can be left out. Proper machinery operation, ensuring production keeps moving, and the safety of the team should always be top priorities.
When it comes to the actual inner-workings of machinery, it can be difficult to gauge safety, or identify safety concerns. It can also be hard to keep an eye on the entire team, making sure they are following the correct safety protocols and being safe.
To help, here is a list of safety first business must haves specific to manufacturing. Any business that is concerned about safety, or has scaled quickly and needs to audit its current safety SOPs, the following may be very helpful.
1. Start With Training The Manufacturing Team
The manufacturing industry is ranked number three for workplace injuries, following public service and transportation. Surprisingly, every seven seconds a worker is injured. To increase safety for the manufacturing team, employers should begin with training. A lot of workplace injuries are the result of improper use of equipment, overexertion, slips, falls, and more. Most of these injuries can be avoided by regular training.
Daily safety meetings before shifts can be useful, and getting the different teams together once a week to discuss safety and go over proper procedures can make a big impact. Every team member should be well trained on the equipment they work with daily. This can cut down on machinery mishaps, since the employee will know the equipment front and back. Train the whole team and safety will follow.
2. Employ Innovation Technology To Boost Equipment Safety Measures
Machinery is equipment the manufacturing team works with daily. Machinery is also at the core of the business, since the equipment produces the products and/or parts needed to meet demand and keep clients paying invoices. However, machinery can be a big time safety concern. This is because machines break down, malfunction, and the human counterparts could be injured, or even killed.
There is innovative technology available to help cut down on machinery malfunctions by identifying potential problems, like breakdowns, before they happen. For example, employing wireless vibration sensor technology, a company can measure equipment 24/7. This type of technology provides an inside look at the condition of verios parts of the equipment. It can often give insight into safety concerns that may be coming to the surface.
3. Does Equipment Need to be Loaded or Unloaded?
Any business that has equipment that needs to be loaded or unloaded by employees, has ore safety concerns than other manufacturing businesses. Why? Loading and unloading machinery is one of the most dangerous times for the team and it poses risks to the equipment. It is one of the greatest moments for worker injury and death to occur.
Areas of any manufacturing business that have this type of equipment should be getting extra safety attention. There needs to be a lot of training on how to safely load and unload the machinery, and management should be focused on employees in that area more.
4. Employees Must Wear Safety Gear At All Times
Safety gear is an important part of keeping the team safe when working in a manufacturing facility. Gloves, eye protection, hearing protection, boots, and other safety equipment should always be worn when operating the equipment, regardless of how minimal the chance for accidents.
5. Machinery Areas Must be Kept Clean, Free From Debris and Safe
Having an efficient and productive manufacturing business is all about the floor. All areas of the manufacturing floor should be clean and free from debris that could be harmful to staff, or debris that could impede proper machinery operation. This could be material left on equipment that could be caught in the production process, or wet surfaces where team members could be injured. Generally, the cleaner the area, the safer it will be.
How Safe is The Manufacturing Facility and Team?
This is a very important question to ask as a manufacturing business owner or operations manager. Injuries can cost the business millions. Over 104 million hours of production are lost annually due to workplace injuries. No business owner or manager wants to add to this startling statistic. OHSOnline recently asked “How are you ensuring safety at your facility?” They want to hear from interested parties.