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Our blog discussing workplace safety opportunities in Nova Scotia and around the world.


Improving Safety through Employee Engagement
Companies looking to reduce injuries in 2013 may want to consider building their employee engagement. That’s because an engaged workforce can help organizations achieve their health and safety goals and objectives. Research conducted over the past decade shows that engaged employees are safer, more productive, make better use of corporate assets, are more likely to stay and are more supportive of organizational change. They also have lower rates of absence and they work harder to deliver strategic objectives.
One of the most notable benefits of an engaged workforce is better health and safety outcomes. An August 2009 Gallup study by Harter, Schmidt, Kilham and Agrawal established a relationship between employee engagement and organizational outcomes. The study found that companies where employees were highly engaged were on average 12 percent more profitable, 18 percent more productive, 25 percent more likely to stay, and almost 50 percent less likely to suffer workplace incidents or injuries (view the Gallup study here: http://nolostcapital.com/sites/nolostcapital.nl/files/blog-attachments/Q12_MetaAnalysis_The_Relationship_Between_Engagement_at_Work_and_Organizational_Outcomes.pdf).
The Institute for Employment Studies (http://www.employment-studies.co.uk/pubs/summary.php?id=408) says that the strongest driver of employee engagement is having a sense of feeling valued and involved. This is comprised of several components including involvement in decision making, opportunities to express and have views listened to by team leaders, having opportunities to develop professionally, and the extent to which the organization is concerned with employees’ health and wellbeing. In a business case study, the Institute found that having an accident or an injury at work has a big negative impact on engagement.
UK researchers Alfes, Truss, Soane, Rees and Gatenby found that companies can build engagement by providing good line management, offering development opportunities, recognizing effort, offering opportunities for two-way dialogue, and by demonstrating a commitment to employee wellbeing (view their study here: (http://www.cipd.co.uk/NR/rdonlyres/DD66E557-DB90-4F07-8198-87C3876F3371/0/Creating_engaged_workforce.pdf) .
The foregoing studies support two important conclusions: that a strong commitment to health and safety is good for employee engagement, and employee engagement is good for business.


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