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November 25, 2020 | HRIS | Posted by Ascentis

How Can Business Leaders Help Build a Safer Workplace?

Workplace safety has been the number one concern for administrators of all stripes in this decidedly unsafe year. That push has been felt even more acutely by people responsible for workforce management and operations than in many other areas. Juggling the logistics of enforcing compliance, implementing remote and onsite safety measures, generating accurate reports, and many other previously unexpected tasks have made for a uniquely stressful situation. Fortunately, your organization can significantly lighten that load by incorporating some new approaches to time and attendance management.

Easing Onsite Operations

Throughout the year the headlines have been largely about Zoom calls, home offices, and the new era of remote work. While all of those factors certainly figure heavily in the 2020 work landscape, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that more than two-thirds of American workers are in roles that require them to be physically onsite at least part of the time. For operations managers in industries like healthcare, construction, manufacturing, hospitality, and many more, there is a real challenge in keeping business running smoothly while also protecting the health and safety of onsite employees.

Investing in safety-oriented hardware is a good place to start. The pandemic has exposed deficiencies in a number of day-to-day time and attendance practices. Businesses that previously relied on outdated technology, like physical time sheets or manual time clocks, have been forced to phase them out in favor of more health-conscious solutions. For example, voice-activated time clocks that automatically check employees’ temperatures can help reduce physical contact and encourage social distancing in the workplace.

Mobile apps are also playing an increasingly important role in workplace safety. A quality mobile app with time and attendance functionality gives employees self-service options to clock in and out, manage their own schedules, submit paid time-off requests, and complete other vital day-to-day functions. Your organization can cut down on physical contact while reducing the workload for administrators and boosting employee empowerment. On the management side, mobile apps allow administrators to send out tailored push notifications to individuals, select groups, or the entire organization, a reliable and convenient way to communicate policy changes and health-related measures.

Finding the Right Software Solutions

Automated time and attendance software solutions also play a high-level role in workplace safety. Anything that makes it easier for operations managers and administrators to perform their daily tasks is an aid to overall health and safety efforts. Having a centralized platform with an easy-to-operate dashboard can make a major difference in your daily operations, especially for businesses that are dealing with multiple locations or a hybrid of onsite and remote workers. As organizations adapt to the pandemic by adding new shifts, reorganizing workspaces, and limiting access to some facilities, having a user-friendly time and attendance system that applies safety measures uniformly and fairly is an essential.

A centralized platform also makes it easier for administrators to stay on top of compliance. The increased complexity of hybrid workforces and flexible scheduling can make it easier for violations of OSHA, HIPAA, FMLA, FLSA, and various state and local time and attendance laws to slip through the cracks. Instituting automated software that automatically scans your system for potential compliance issues can be a lifesaver for avoiding fines, penalties, and loss of reputation.

Training and Communication

The pandemic has changed the rules in a lot of ways. Both remote and in-person workforces will require significant training to stay up to date with the latest safety standards and best practices. A customizable learning management system is a must for businesses that need to get a large number of employees trained or reskilled in new processes, especially if those roles will be at least partially remote. A strong LMS is also necessary for organizations that need to get individual employees certified in new skills, or for any business bringing on new hires who need to be trained for their roles

Those training considerations tie in closely with the expanded need for overall communications. Clear channels of communications are more important than ever, as workers take on unexpected roles both on- and off-site. Your centralized operations platform should include intuitive communication options that allow employees to report issues and send real-time feedback. Sometimes timely communication is the difference between a contained incident and a full-blown health risk. It’s in your organization’s best interests to make those conversations as easy as possible.

Want to learn more about the ways more efficient operations management can impact workplace safety? Download our handy checklist today!