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SAFETY CORNER Safety—A Critical Element of

an Employer’s Reputation (Nov. 2012, ASSE Newsletter, Volume XXVIII, No. 11)

BY KEVIN ERNST, COSS Former MCM Safety Director

Editor’s note: In the last issue of Roadwise, I wrote about “Driver Turnover.” The main point of the article was to call attention to the fact that a good driver is an important asset; and business owner’s concern and involvement in their driver’s health and wellbeing (safety) is required preventive maintenance in order to retain this valuable asset. This is also applicable to your mechanics, machine operators and your other employees.We should recognize the truth that most trucking companies are currently filling needed professional driver and other positions by hiring people away from other companies. This is because most good employees are probably already employed by someone. Is anyone looking for a driver at this time? With all this still fresh in our minds, and the

fact it is a very important issue at this time in our industry; I thought it deserved a follow-up. I recently read an article which already summed up exactly what I felt needed to be stated to backup last month’s message. Since it makes no sense to rewrite what has already been well written, I solicited permission to re-purpose someone else’s work.

In 2010, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)

released a report that showed an upward trend in the number of workplace fatalities. According to the BLS figures, the number of workers who died on the job increased from 4,551 to 4,690 in 2010 after having declined each year over the past decade. An organization’s workplace safety record

can be an important piece of information for candidates when it comes to recruiting and retention strategy. For example:

SAFETY IS IMPORTANT In a world where TV reality shows

provide an escape to exciting and sometimes dangerous experiences, job seekers confess safety is a growing concern for them.


CORPORATE RESPONSIBILITY Today’s job seekers are associating an

employer’s ethics and corporate responsibility with being a great place to work and build a career. Candidates are more likely to choose an employer whose values align with their own for long-term success. A company that demonstrates a responsibility for employee safety will attract candidates, whereas candidates will likely shun an organization that demonstrates little regard for safety on the job.

RISKING CAREER GROWTH As with sports, any serious injury can

dramatically change or abruptly end a promising career. Job candidates must give consideration to their long-term future and career when examining a potential employer. Thought must be given to the potential for serious injury while on the job, when evaluating any opportunity that could impede or end a career.

EMPLOYEEMORALE An injury or death while on the job will

undoubtedly cause a ripple effect throughout a company and send a wave of concern across

ISSUE 6, 2012 |

other employees and their families. Lower morale and safety concerns will cause workers to question their own safety while on the job and may give them reason to seek other opportunities.

BAD PRESS Anytime a work-related accident or death

occurs, there is always the bad press and news that follows a company for months or even years afterwards. This type of media attention, spreading itself across the vast network that is the Internet can turn potential candidates away form even exploring an opening. A solid safety record can make a big

difference in how easy or difficult it can be to recruit candidates and retain employees at an organization. Competition for top talent will continue to grow as the economy recovers and every number and statistic becomes important. RW

The above was reprinted with permission by the Associated Employers/Montana Safety Council per Cyndi Case and originally appeared in CAI Management Newsletter.


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