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A recent Gallup report found that companies with higher scores on employee engagement saw 64% fewer accidents than companies with low employee engagement.

Yet, many companies today, particularly in construction, still manage safety programs with paper forms and Excel spreadsheets, keeping oversight responsibility in the hands of a few people.

The result: spotty employee engagement with safety programs, which leads to a higher risk of worksite accidents.

One way to increase employee engagement is through a mobile-first safety program. With it, construction companies can foster better communication among employees and company leaders, creating a culture of collective accountability for maintaining jobsite safety. This helps companies stay compliant, reduce turnover and, most importantly, protect workers.

1. Respond to Employee Concerns in Real Time

Nothing is more damaging to a company’s safety culture than when employees feel that company leaders are unresponsive to jobsite safety concerns.

For example, if an employee submits a risk observation form but it takes weeks before a site manager sees it, in a worst-case scenario, the site manager never resolves the employee’s issue.

When companies fail to address employees’ concerns in a timely manner, they increase the risk of accidents. Such behavior also discourages employees from speaking up in the future, which puts them at an even greater risk of harm.

A mobile-first approach can ensure that company leaders see and address safety issues as soon as an employee identifies them. A site manager can, for example, opt to receive push notifications whenever someone reports a concern, complaint or incident. They can then respond to the alert immediately or schedule a time to meet with an employee to discuss the matter further.

Employees will be more likely to bring up safety observations moving forward if they see that company leaders are willing to listen and take action.

2. Help Employees to Be Proactive About Safety

Company leadership often sets the tone for safety. If a site manager pushes for fast completion of a project over safe completion, employees may choose not to flag risks for fear of repercussions.

This can lead to a culture where employees only focus on safety in certain situations, which increases the likelihood of errors and accidents that can cause injuries. Some employees may even leave to work elsewhere if they feel a company’s leaders don’t prioritize safety.

Through proactive mobile communications, company leaders can ensure that safety is always top of mind and help employees stay current on their safety training.

For example, a mobile safety app can send an employee a calendar reminder if one of their equipment certifications is about to expire. The employee can then renew the certification in their own time, on any device, before the expiration date. An app can also notify employees every month to review important topics such as ladder safety and fall prevention.

A mobile-first safety program empowers employees to take active responsibility for their own safety and helps the entire organization stay compliant at all times.

3. Make It Easy for Employees to Access the Latest Safety Information

In construction, safety needs are constantly evolving. A new jobsite may pose a chemical risk that employees aren’t familiar with. Employees may need retraining before they start using a new version of a machine.

Site managers and safety experts need an efficient way to keep employees updated on the latest protocols and training courses. With a mobile-first approach, company leaders can easily distribute new safety resources for employees to access from any device, wherever they are.

For instance, an employee may arrive at a new jobsite and realize that they’re unfamiliar with how to use a certain kind of personal protective equipment. With access to a workplace safety app, they can review the right educational materials on the spot.

When company leaders make resources available via mobile devices, employees are always equipped with the knowledge they need to protect themselves and others.

The Right Technology Keeps Employees Engaged with Ongoing Safety Efforts

It’s time for construction companies to leave paper forms, manuals and physical report logs in the past. A mobile-first safety strategy can drive higher employee engagement with workplace safety efforts, which can lower the risk of accidents and compliance violations.

A mobile-first safety program is also one way construction companies can look to retain younger workers, many of whom may feel more comfortable completing tasks on phones than on paper.

When employees can access safety information and training modules on familiar platforms, they’ll be more likely to engage with the material and less likely to leave for competitors. Gallup found that for companies in high-turnover industries like construction, those with high engagement experienced 18% less turnover than companies with low engagement.

Construction companies that embrace a mobile-first safety program stand to enhance the safety of their employees for years to come. 


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