Promoting a safe workforce can begin long before new construction workers arrive for their first day on the jobsite. Having a formal hiring and onboarding process can help ensure that employees are properly trained to perform their required duties safely. Here’s a look at how workplace safety has improved in recent years, and some ways that construction companies can hire and onboard construction workers into a culture of safety.
Improvements in workplace safety measures adopted over the past four decades save thousands of workers’ lives and prevent countless injuries every year. The number of fatal worker accidents has declined by nearly two-thirds, from an average of 38 worker deaths a day in 1970 to 13 in 2014.1 But the jobsite remains a dangerous place for construction workers. One in five worker deaths in 2014 was in the construction field.2
Construction companies can take steps to protect workers by hiring candidates with a focus on safety and then giving them ongoing safety training, according to Bob Kreuzer, a Construction Risk Control professional at Travelers. “Creating detailed job descriptions, performing post-offer functional capacity exams and offering site-specific safety training can help companies give workers proper skills and support,” Kreuzer explains.