The optimization of safety and health protection of employees is one of the indispensable support processes of a company – primarily for human reasons, but also from an economic point of view: Accidents and work-related illnesses cost both companies and society a lot of money. Especially in small and medium-sized enterprises, the failure of an employee can cause sensitive disturbances in the operation process. That is why it is naturally in the entrepreneurial interest to avoid accidents at work and health hazards in the workplace. In addition, occupational safety and health is an area strictly regulated by the legislature: In the event of a breach, the management of a company threatens to impose penalties in the case of serious personal injury.
However, occupational safety and health care is no longer just a matter of security and the elimination of risks to the safety of employees. It is a question of preserving health and working in a human environment, in conditions that are constantly changing: Faster processes, new tasks and technologies, more time-out are just some of the hallmarks.
Selected advantages of efficient occupational safety measures:
- Accidents at work, occupational diseases and property damage are minimized or reduced and thus also the hours of failure and the consequential costs
- Occupational health and safety has been shown to have a positive effect on working conditions and thus employee satisfaction
- Proof of occupational safety is required by large companies in tenders & inquiries from potential suppliers in many cases
- Legal obligations in the field of occupational health and safety are met
- The risk of liability of the responsible entrepreneurs is reduced
- Checks by the employers' liability insurance association and the labour inspectorate are easily overcome
- No imprisonment for serious personal injury or high property damage due to the entrepreneur liability
The fourth Industrial Revolution presents the occupational prevention work in occupational safety with new challenges, the management of which can only be achieved by the further development of proven prevention concepts – for example in relation to the distance-free interaction between man and machine, as is the case with collaborative robotic systems. At the same time, however, cyber-physical systems open up a multitude of new opportunities for the safety and health of employees: For example, the use of smart sensors in protective clothing can reduce the risk of accidents and other life-threatening situations. Or on the basis of a comprehensive monitoring of air quality, temperature and lighting conditions, the environmental conditions for work processes can be optimized.