Health and Safety Document Management
To assist services continue operating and to bring subsequent services online during the Covid-19 pandemic, it is necessary to produce additional risk assessments, safe working practices and guidance. These documents are concerned with the risks the pandemic would have on the service in question and outlined suitable controls and safe working practices to ensure the health, safety, and wellbeing of employees.
As part of the effective management of the health, safety, and wellbeing of employees it is essential that these documents are shared with relevant employees and that the employees understand the new controls and safe working practices.
Managers are required to follow five steps when implementing a new working practice or giving out a new risk assessment
1. Share the document with employees and discuss the contents.
2. Ensure the employees understand the new controls and what is expected of them.
3. Record the sharing of the documents.
4. Implement new controls (through provision of resources if necessary)
5. Retain the document for future reference.
Engaging with Employees
It is important that all employees understand the new controls that have been introduced along with their roles and responsibilities. There are several ways to effectively share new information contained in the risk assessments and safe working practices.
• Virtual Team or one to one meeting (where documents can be shared and discussed)
• Toolbox talks (with limited numbers)
• Issuing of electronic or hard copies
Feedback from Employees
Employees may have opinions and ideas about the risk assessments and safe working practices due to their experience in their role. They may be able to identify issues with the way a new control or working practice that is to be implemented could impact the service delivery. This feedback can be used to update and make the risk assessments more relevant to the service area and help during any review process. Actively engaging with staff will help to ensure that the risk assessments and safe working practices are accurate and relevant to the service.
Union and non-union representatives should be consulted as part of the engagement process.
Documenting the Sharing/Training of Processes
After sharing the documentation with employees, it is important to maintain a record of this. In the case of outdoor and peripatetic workers, it is advisable to have the employee sign an attendance sheet to show their presence at the discussion, presentation or meeting.
In the case of virtual meetings managers should implement a method of recording delivery of the information.
Page updated: 15/02/2021 11:39:13