More than half of workplace accidents involving young workers occur during their first six months on the job. As an employer, you are responsible for ensuring that your workers are prepared for the job before they start working.
Investing in training your workers can result in higher productivity, raised morale, and a stronger sense of loyalty to your firm. It’s an investment that makes good business sense.
How to conduct a safety training or orientation session
There are four basic steps to any training or orientation session.
Step 1: Evaluate the situation
First decide what areas the worker needs training in. Compare the worker’s job description to the Worker Orientation Checklist. If there is no job description, this would be a good time to write one. If this is the first time orienting the worker, plan for a thorough training session. If you are re-orienting the worker, focus on the topics that relate to the new situation or new hazards.
It’s a good idea to prepare a handout sheet for workers with contact information for supervisors and first aid attendants, as well as where to find more information about worker rights and responsibilities in the Regulation.
Step 2: Train the worker
Sit down with the worker and go over the Checklist. You should show them emergency exits and first aid facilities, and demonstrate specific work procedures.
A typical orientation should take anywhere from one to four hours. In a higher-risk workplace such as a sawmill, the orientation may take a full day. An effective orientation should make workers aware of potential hazards and let them know who to talk to if they have questions about health and safety in the future.
Step 3: Test the worker
Make sure the worker understands the training by asking the worker to recall specific procedures (for example, how to clean the grill and dispose of hot oil) or general requirements (for example, when and where they need to use personal protective equipment). Follow up — ask workers questions within a few days and periodically over the next month or two.
Step 4: Keep records of the orientation
Be sure to document all training. An orientation checklist will ensure that you have covered all the key topics when training a new worker. Give copies of the checklist to the worker and keep copies for your own records.