Technology has proven its importance over time, so it’s no wonder it has entered various industries. It helps companies and businesses be faster, make smarter decisions, save money, and protect their people.

According to the International Labour Organisation, there are about 360 million work-related accidents globally. The numbers are overwhelming, all the more so since this impacts labourers from all industries. Companies worldwide acknowledge the issue and have started to take action in this sense. One of their ways of doing things is implementing technology in the workplace. Technology might not be known for its role in enhancing employee safety, but the truth is that it goes a long way towards this purpose. So, apart from the well-known advantages of boosting productivity and helping IT departments develop robust strategies, technology also enhances employees’ protection through training, reporting, and monitoring, among others. Manufacturing and construction industries, in particular, are making use of advanced tools to minimise the risks associated with their business operations. Artificial intelligence, machine learning, gene editing, and cloud computing are just a few of the numerous technologies designed to enhance safety and health.

There’s no doubt: technology can change work environments for the better. But you must first know what technology to use and how to manage it to work for your specific type of business and needs. The above-mentioned recommendations may shed some light on this matter, so keep reading.

Training technologies

The lack of awareness among managers and employees regarding workplace safety has always been a concern. That’s why we’re starting by saying that training is not an option but an obligation. In industries that involve working under threatening conditions, such as construction and mining, labourers should dispose of the right work equipment, also called personal protective equipment (PPE). But in order to use this equipment to its highest potential, employees need accurate training. Business owners are obliged to provide workers with a comprehensive training program that educates them about workplace safety, including how to use PPE without exposing themselves to hazards.

Fortunately, technology is by your side. You can now enhance training programs with technological innovations such as virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR). Interactive training tools based on such technologies help provide workers with real-time training. In most cases, employees enter a virtual work environment similar to the real one and are put in diverse situations that require the use of equipment. This way, they learn how to handle the PPE correctly and hone their skills for real-life challenges. VR can be used for various purposes, including fire evacuations, so if you wonder whether this technology is suitable for your specific type of business, it most probably is.

Safety apps

Nowadays, there’s an application for almost everything, so if you’re looking for something to help you with workplace safety, you’re most likely to find one. These apps use advanced software that allows you to spot hazards due to a complex recording and notifying system. They collect valuable information in a single place so that you find it easy to manage safety-related issues from anywhere and at any time. Most apps in this respect are free, but they most likely don’t dispose of premium features such as measuring noise hazards. So, if you’re in search of a more complex technology, consider the premium apps available on both Google Play and App Store.

Such apps can also help you develop meaningful safety and health checklists and stay thus compliant with occupational safety regulations. Therefore, you minimise workplace accidents and keep employees safe from harm. As for the price, a monthly subscription to such services is obviously less expensive than drones and robots. However, no matter the cost, we recommend investing in safety technology, as it’s the most powerful way to keep employees safe and thrive. Besides, if one of your workers ever gets injured because you didn’t provide safe working conditions, the costs would be much more significant than the tools needed to protect these people. Remember that it’s the employee’s right to claim compensation for a work accident. So, ensure you remain compliant with occupational safety regulations and always prioritise your employees’ safety.

Robots

Drones and robots stand out within modern and emerging safety technology. And no matter how futuristic this might sound, many companies worldwide are using such technologies to complete hard, sometimes impossible for humans, tasks. AI-driven robots can help with everything from conducting inspections and doing repetitive tasks to more hazardous activities like exploring hard-to-reach locations and lifting heavy objects. There were about 23,000 industrial robots operating in UK factories in 2021, which is clear proof that automation has started to be increasingly taken into account. However, the robot density worldwide is downright impressive. Some popular countries leveraging robotics to such an extent that they introduced the technology in almost every area include South Korea, Japan, the USA, Canada, and Germany.

Drones

Drones, on the other hand, or Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS), are used mainly for site inspection. They help identify potential life-threatening hazards and prevent fatal injuries. Using such tools to assess the risk of a specific area would give you more insight into its safety level and possible measures to increase employee protection. Industries like construction and mining, which require working at heights, respectively underground, should consider this kind of technology, as they pose more injury risks than others.

Neither robots nor drones are challenging to use, as they usually come with a comprehensive instruction manual. Thus, you will learn how to set up drones with cameras, scanners, or sensors to perform tasks specific to your business.

Voice data collectors

Voice data collection technology has been around for quite a while, but this doesn’t mean it’s not fruitful. Hand-free devices such as headsets are especially helpful in gathering information that is hard to write down. In an organisation where the volume of information is incommensurable, voice data collectors are indispensable. Not only do they allow workers to perform routine safety checks more easily, but they also keep them more focused on their job.

 

Any of the technologies discussed above could push your company forward, so if you haven’t considered one yet, maybe it’s time to do so.