Gone are the days when people just shrugged their shoulders and accepted dangerous working conditions. OSHA regulations are endlessly evolving and becoming stricter, and employees have embraced higher expectations for a safe work environment.
For your shop to maintain compliance and remain competitive in the marketplace, you must prioritize clear and impactful safety protocols.
Workplace Safety Matters in Modern Machine Shops
If you treat machining safety as a one-off issue to be addressed reactively when an incident occurs, you’re going about it the wrong way. Your internal safety standards should be supported with well-orchestrated processes and implemented into your ongoing operations.
Just as you regularly identify ways to boost efficiency in your shop, you should periodically review your safety protocols to determine areas of improvement.
Machining safety starts with the right mindset
When shop owners and managers aren’t serious about machining safety, key initiatives eventually get overlooked, ignored, and dismissed. The result? Someone will get hurt.
However, if you intentionally set your mind on safety, safety strategies become part of your modern machine shop’s DNA. Instead of viewing safety as a hassle or a hindrance, your team will embrace safety as a foundational value and key ingredient of success.
Fostering an internal culture that prioritizes safety is more successful than scheduling the occasional required “safety day.” Employees tend to view safety days as a waste of time and rarely come away from them with meaningful next steps.
Onboard employees with safety at the forefront
When safety is an indisputable priority from Day One, new team members are better equipped to keep themselves and others safe. Not every job shop operates the same way, so you should never assume that a manufacturing professional already knows appropriate safety procedures.
Remember that safety isn’t an “add-on” to daily operations. “Safely” is the only right way to do the job, and an unsafe operation cannot be deemed successful. Weave machining safety into every element of your onboarding process, and the training will stick.
Create a culture of safety
You may not have thought much about how your shop’s safety record impacts your ability to attract, hire, and retain talented team members. But in a market with more available jobs than prospective employees, workers will exercise their options to avoid dangerous jobs.
Modern machine shops have the opportunity and the responsibility to fight the outdated notion that manufacturing is innately dirty and dangerous. Today’s shops differ dramatically from the precision machine shops of 50 years ago. So if you want to attract today’s workers, you have no choice but to prioritize issues that matter to them—and safety is at the top of the list.
Improve Machining Safety in Your Shop
As the manufacturer’s voice in Washington, NTMA is always on top of the latest safety guidance from OSHA and other regulators. NTMA members are among the first to know about new policies that may affect their businesses because our organization is mission-driven to help precision machine shop owners succeed.
Are you ready to enhance the safety strategies in your shop? Start with the Shop Safety Course from NTMA-U!