Should PPE training be part of your employee onboarding process?
COVID-19 has affected everyone but with the first 500,000 of our most vulnerable citizens in the UK having been vaccinated, the lessons we have learnt will hopefully allow us to prepare for a return to normality. One factor to consider is the steps we take to prepare employees to return to their place of work, and how new recruits are onboarded.
Benefits of a Safe Workplace
Starting a new role, especially amid the pandemic, can be an anxious time for all involved. With so many of us now used to working from home or being furloughed, the reintroduction to a work environment should be taken into consideration by employers.
To build safety and confidence at work, it’s a good idea to ensure that both employees and new starters alike can visually see the precautions and measures taken by an employer. PPE is one way in which both the safety of the employee and the confidence to work in an environment is increased. Face shields and protective masks help workers to continue to communicate effectively whilst still being safe for example, while other industry-specific items of PPE are vital for limiting workplace accidents and injuries, something which shouldn’t be overlooked in the overwhelming focus on making spaces COVID-safe.
Importance of PPE Training
While ensuring your team has access to the relevant PPE needed for their line of work, understanding how to use their PPE and why this is vital is key to its success. Training will ensure your staff are all up to date with the latest UK government advice, understand what is needed from them at work and what their risks are, and how their actions can affect others.
Making PPE training part of the onboarding process is crucial to keep everyone safe. However, regular training should also take place whenever new pieces of PPE are distributed or when any negligence to the workwear protocols already in place is observed.
What Should PPE Training Include?
Training should be as comprehensive as possible and at a minimum cover:
- The risks present at work and why PPE is needed
- A demonstration of how to use the item provided correctly
- Correct storage and disposal
- How to check for damage and defects
- Where the employee can find replacement PPE
All places of work should offer PPE training now as part of their onboarding process in relation to coronavirus. Industries such as construction, engineering, and warehousing should also have training in place for regular workwear items, including hard hats, boiler suits, and any other necessary workwear to ensure staff safety remains a top priority during the pandemic.