Since you’re starting a construction business, you probably already know that the industry is filled with risk. It would be hard to deny when one in five workplace accidents takes place in the construction industry, and construction labor is listed as number thirteen on the most dangerous jobs list.
The risk of accidents is one reason many states, including Virginia, have established oversight committees like the Board Of Contractors to regulate the education and licensing of contractors. Measures like this strive to make the industry safer.
So, how can you make the construction business you’re starting safer? Here are a few ideas to get you started.
Get Your Contractor’s License
The fact that boards have been created to regulate contractor licensing shows how important it is. Having a licensed contractor on scene reduces the risk of injury to your crew, passersby, and property.
Because you own the business, it makes the most sense for you to become a contractor. To do so, you must pass the contractor’s exam for your Class A, B, or C license. Which type you need depends on what level of work you plan to do.
Class C is required for projects costing more than $1,000, Class B is necessary for jobs exceeding $10,000, and Class A is needed for jobs that go over the $120,000 mark.
In Virginia and many other states, you must enroll in an exam prep course to prepare for the exam, regardless of which type of license you need. The prep course can prepare you for all versions of the exam and comes with a money-back guarantee if you don’t pass.
Enroll in a class today to become a licensed contractor and increase the safety of your company.
Invest In Training
Regular training is one of the most important tools you can use to keep everyone safe. It serves as a refresher for your employees who have been with you for a while and introduces new hires to all the crucial information.
We tend to think of training as something only new employees need. However, people who have been doing the job for a long time often get too comfortable. That comfort leads to taking risks they may not even notice, which leads to injury. That can be prevented through regular training and development meetings.
Regular training also gives you the chance to introduce new methods and safety measures. Staying on top of the latest developments in your industry is one of the best ways to keep everyone safe.
While safety is one of the major benefits of training and development, it isn’t the only one. Training meetings create a safe place for concerns and problems to be voiced. Everyone can speak up with questions and concerns, leading to a better overall work environment.
Encourage The “See Something, Say Something” Method
The “See Something, Say Something” method can do wonders when applied to dangerous jobs like construction. The idea is to encourage your employees to keep each other safe by saying something when they see unsafe behavior.
This shouldn’t be confrontational, just informative. An example would be if one employee notices that another has forgotten to put on a piece of safety equipment. They could casually point out what the other worker has forgotten, without making a big deal of it.
Safety hazards usually come from someone not knowing the safety procedure or simply forgetting it. A friendly reminder can be all it takes to keep an accident from occurring.
Encourage your employees to feel comfortable doing this to everyone, including you. The goal is to keep everyone safe, and no one is above safety procedure. Over time, this policy will foster a spirit of teamwork and reduce workplace accidents.
There will always be some risk involved in the construction industry, but it can be lowered. By taking these steps, you can make your construction business safer for you, your employees, and everyone else.