top of page
The Managers Guide to Health and Safety at Work

The Managers Guide to Health and Safety at Work

Health and safety at work is, for many managers, a difficult subject. Apart from being steeped in the law, which can be difficult to interpret, it requires a broad knowledge of many disciplines, such as psychology, engineering, chemistry, ergonomics and medicine, each of which is a subject of study in its own right. Individual attitudes to health and safety, and indeed the corporate attitudes of organisations, may vary substantially. Is health and safety just a question of complying with the law? Should an organisation that likes to think of itself as caring, promote health and safety as part of that caring philosophy? Or should health and safety be seen as an important feature of the business operation aimed at reducing the losses associated with accidents, ill health, etc? Increasingly, as we move towards a quality-orientated approach to our business activities, it will be seen that health and safety is an integral feature of such an approach. Everyone has a role to play in the management of quality. Accidents, ill health, sickness absence and damage-producing incidents feature in the ‘price of non-conformance’ – an important measure in quality management. How much did accidents and sickness absence cost your organisation last year? What is the cost of your current employer’s and occupier’s liability insurance? Have you recently been prosecuted and fined for breaches of health and safety legislation? There is no doubt that accidents and sickness represent substantial losses to any company. A meagre 10 per cent reduction in these costs can be significant. A 20 per cent reduction would be marvellous. There is a need, therefore, for managers to be more knowledgeable about the subject of health and safety from a legal, scientific and technical viewpoint. This book has been written with this objective in mind. I hope it will help managers to understand the subject better and make a contribution to improved levels of health and safety performance.

Jeremy Stranks 1989

    bottom of page