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How to use safety software to manage incidents in the workplace 

How to manage incidents in the workplace

Wondering how to manage incidents in the workplace?

When encountering a workplace incident, there are a few requirements in order to report it accurately. The most important thing is not to panic. Reporting correctly can make all the difference – especially within the legal sphere. 

Types of incident

An incident is not necessarily a major injury or event. Importantly an incident can actually be a smaller signpost to a larger problem that might develop into the future. 

There have been four main types of incidents highlighted:

  • Near misses

    Situations where people could have been injured, but, luckily nothing came to pass.

  • No harm events


    Operational risks that all staff across an organization should be made aware of.

  • Adverse events


    These kinds of incidents are related to medicines, medical devices, and vaccines.

  • Sentinel events


    These are unexpected events that result in any type of harm

So, what should you do when you encounter an event?

Take action

It is best practice to have specific team members who’ve been allocated to take responsibility in case of an incident. This is useful to bypass the natural reaction when something happens: panic. 

The action that needs to be taken can vary from emergency to emergency, but the main thing is that there is an allocated person who can make sure it happens right away. 

Report the incident

Reporting the incident is the part of the process that ensures all the correct authorities stay correctly informed. Reporting protects employees from any future consequences that could happen as a result of the incident.

According to the statutory requirements, it is essential to report the following:

  • Fatalities
  • Injuries that require hospitalisation
  • People exposed to chemicals
  • Major spills or environmental hazard

Ensure the incident documentation is secure

Now that the event has been reported, it must be documented in the most secure fashion. 

The best solution is to use an incident reporting system, which can order, store and manage all documents associated with the incident. This system is a secured centralised repository, much more effective that paper-based safety statements which can still be found in use.

Investigation

Once the incident has been dealt with, and the report secured, it is good practice to assess the root causes of the problem. An investigation should be made so that preventative measures can be put in place to minimise the risk of it happening again.

This analysis, if carried out correctly, should identify any underlying issues that will help you manage incidents in the future.

Once you’ve investigated, you can then: 

Develop corrective actions to manage incidents

In the aftermath of many incidents, a lot of organisations report with a lag. Then, they forget all about it. Acting in this way is irresponsible and hinders any further investigation and work that might refine a better future response.

Corrective actions help to discuss what might have been done better, so that future accidents are preempted. Looking at the actions that can be corrective, to better predict and prevent these kinds of incidents occurring is a vital part of an incident reporting process.

Future steps to manage incidents at work

Reporting the incident is only the first part of the process. It is very important as an initial step, however the most important part happens after. The challenge for businesses is to assess the reasons for its occurrence and put in place preventative measures.

Incident reporting systems are the most proficient method to manage and report workplace accidents, so that the safety of workers is kept paramount.