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How Tech Can Improve Workplace Safety

When people consider technology in the workplace, they frequently focus exclusively on how technology can increase worker productivity or advance information technology initiatives. But workplace technology can do more than provide more accurate data and boost productivity.

Workplace safety is important in any company because everyone wants to work in a safe environment, and it’s the employer’s legal responsibility to provide that. Tech can help employers minimize risks and comply with safety regulations.

This isn’t something new. Technology has been used to mitigate workplace injuries and fatalities for many years already, but new, more sophisticated tools are now being developed.

A few ways that technology is increasing workplace safety for employees include safety monitoring, training, and reporting. Furthermore, technology enables employees to become more aware of their work environment and potential hazards.

High-speed communication also enhances workplace safety. Now that remote work has become more common, it opens the door to new safety concerns, and real-time communications help companies manage those risks.

Cloud computing, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and gene editing are just a handful of the most important technological breakthroughs we’ve seen in recent years, and there’s no denying that they’re had a positive effect on our health and safety.

Our world is becoming more interconnected than ever before, and technology is helping us stay as safe as possible in our personal and professional lives. Over the past decade, we’ve used various technologies to turn inherently dangerous industries such as construction and manufacturing into considerably safer places to work with limited and predictable risks.

List of Ways Tech Can Improve Workplace Safety

1. Training Software

Improper usage of machinery or equipment is one of the leading causes of workplace injuries. This usually happens because staff members have not received adequate training to handle the equipment safely and the company’s training programs are not as thorough as they should be. 

Now that VR has become a popular training tool, employees can learn how to use the equipment correctly by immersing themselves in a virtual environment that’s a replica of the one they’ll be working in. This allows them to practice how to react in potentially dangerous circumstances without actually being exposed to any danger.

Although these technologies have a higher initial cost, they can help companies save money in the long run since they reduce the need for human trainers or instructors.

2. Autonomous Cleaning Solutions

Cleaning standards for businesses have become significantly more rigorous since the pandemic began in 2020. However, having cleaning staff available around the clock is impractical, so businesses must balance their efforts by investing in technology.

Beyond the automatic soap dispensers and faucets used in many offices years before the pandemic, companies can now use autonomous tech tools like cleaning robots for floors and surfaces and app-controlled cleaning appliances.

3. 3D Visualization and Data Technology

Workers in some industries, such as mining, are required to work in distant or secluded locations, exposing them to greater unknown risks. These risks can now be mitigated by gathering real-time data from the location and pairing this data with 3D visualization technology. Companies can use 3D visualization technology to digitally replicate working environments and study them to decide the safest practices to use.

Sewer inspectors, for example, who work in high-risk environments can use cameras to evaluate difficult-to-reach areas and determine if they’re safe to access. As a result, they won’t be venturing into uncharted territory and won’t risk injuries. It’s similar to how surgeons use cameras to reduce the need for invasive procedures.

4. IoT Technology

Another common cause of workplace accidents and injuries is malfunctioning equipment. Companies can use sensors and IoT technology to track their equipment and quickly identify issues that might put their workers at risk.

IoT or Internet of Things technology has been implemented in a variety of industries since it makes it possible to connect equipment and various other devices to the internet and receive data from them in real-time.

5. Wearable Technology

People working in hazardous environments can be protected by using wearable devices to monitor vital signs such as temperature, heart rate, and blood oxygen levels. If a worker’s temperature, for example, rises to dangerous levels, the device will alert a supervisor so operations can be halted and the worker kept safe.

Wearable technology can also monitor environmental conditions and notify workers if a specific area is safe to enter. For instance, some people work in environments with a high risk of exposure to harmful gases. In this case, they can wear devices that monitor gas levels and alert them of potential dangers.

6. Safety Apps

These days there’s an app for pretty much anything you can think of, so as you would expect, there are apps for workplace safety as well. Depending on your sector or work environment, different apps can record and notify you of different risks.

To give a few examples, workers in noisy environments can use Decibel to measure noise, SmartSuite can be used to update safety data sheets and risk assessment reports for hazardous chemicals, while the T5 Safety App can be used for checking equipment and reporting incidents.

7. Drones

Drones can help increase workplace safety in a variety of industries. They’re an excellent tool for gathering data and helping employees avoid potentially harmful situations. For instance, working at height is a major cause of fatal injuries. Instead of exposing workers to high-risk situations, drones can be used to first assess the area so supervisors can employ the correct safety procedures.

They can also assist response teams in events that involve physical security threats by gathering and sending information that will allow them to make the best decisions.

8. Record Keeping and Auditing

Record keeping and auditing tools may not sound as exciting as drones, but they have a major impact on workplace safety. They’ve essentially revolutionized the way we collect and analyze safety data.

Safety management software can help companies determine what types of data to collect, what to look for, and how to analyze it. It simplifies the process to such an extent that even someone with little knowledge of occupational safety procedures can complete the task without missing anything crucial.

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Mehul Boricha
Mehul Boricha
Mehul Boricha is the driving force behind Tech Arrival. He is a computer and smartphone geek from Junagadh, Gujarat, India. He is a Software Engineer by Education & a Blogger by Passion. Apart from technology geek, his free time is dedicated to cybersecurity research, server optimization, and contributing to open-source projects.

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