A safety manager is generally responsible for the overall safety of an entire facility. One of their primary responsibilities is to ensure that a facility is OSHA compliant. There are many requirements OSHA places on facilities, which can make this a difficult and complex job. Some of the most significant things that OSHA checks for include the following:
- Ensure the workplace is free from significant safety or health hazards
- Check to make sure the workplace is in full compliance with OSHA regulations by performing regular inspections and monitoring of key areas.
- Use proper visual safety signs to alert employees and visitors of potential hazards
- Ensure employees have access to, and use proper tools and equipment, and that they are properly maintained.
- Ensure that all safety rules and regulations are properly conveyed to the employees through ongoing training and informational meetings.
This may seem easy enough at first glance, but with many facilities being quite large and having many employees it can get complex. These are only the five main categories of things that a safety manager has to perform. There are many other areas which they will be responsible for as well. They are normally going to be the individual who is tasked with keeping records of any injuries or fatalities which occur in the facility. These statistics must be reported to OSHA and any other state and federal agencies required by law.
Depending on the specific type of facility, there may be other types of things which need to be tracked and reported. Facilities in the medical industry, for example, need to keep track of potentially hazardous biological waste and ensure it is disposed of properly. When companies work with toxic chemicals it is the responsibility of the safety manager to keep track of them and ensure they are used and disposed of in a safe way.
One of the most important things a safety manager is responsible for is ensuring everyone in the facility is trained on all the safety standards necessary. This typically means holding regularly scheduled training sessions for new employees, and annual (or as needed) updates to ensure all employees are kept up to date. Whenever there is a significant change to the way things are done, the safety manager is the one responsible for getting everyone trained on the new processes.
Depending on the size of the facility, they may also be responsible for monitoring the performance of employees to ensure they are complying with all safety policies. This is extremely important because if people don’t take the training they were provided and apply it to their day to day responsibilities, there will be many more accidents.
While the safety manager’s job may seem like it has a lot of responsibilities, many of them are overlapping. In addition, when they do their job well in one area it can reduce their overall work load in other areas. If, for example, the safety manager is able to set great safety procedures it can make training employees much easier. If they then provide high-quality training to everyone in the facility, it can reduce the number of accidents dramatically, which will reduce the amount of reporting the safety manager has to do. When done properly, the safety manager can not only help everyone remain safe while at work, but also keep the facility running more smoothly.