Importance of Risk Assessment at Workplace

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What is the importance of  risk assessment? When it comes to protecting the health and safety of workers, risk assessment is the key management tool. The fact that they are required by law for businesses and some self-employed individuals is something that many people aren’t even aware of.

What is risk assessment ? To put it simply, Risk Assessment is the systematic identification, evaluation, and implementation of acceptable control measures to eliminate or minimize dangers in a workplace.

Important terms to define while doing a Risk Assessment are:

  • According to the definition, An accident is “an unexpected incident that causes harm or injury”.
  • Something that poses a risk of harm is called a Hazard
  • The chance and severity of an adverse event (injury, poor health, or damage) due to a hazard are known as Risks.

In every workplace, the sorts of Risk Assessments necessary should be reasonable and relevant to the operational tasks being performed. Existing laws and regulations govern a wide range of businesses.

Read also: What is Risk Assessment?

Importance of Risk Assessment

Health, safety, and well-being hazards may be avoided, minimized, or controlled with the help of a risk assessment, which is a simple and systematic process.

It is a legal obligation for any employer who employs five or more employees and must be recorded.

The importance of risk assessment is listed below:

  • Health and safety concerns in the workplace must be identified and evaluated
  • Review existing control measures to determine their effectiveness and appropriateness
  • Additional controls must be applied if the risk is deemed to be anything other than low.
  • If more resources are required to achieve the goals, they should be given priority.
  • It is possible to prevent accidents, bad health, and associated expenses by doing a thorough risk assessment and taking actions to decrease those risks.

If a firm does not have the appropriate controls in place :

  • it may pay dearly. Among other things, they might suffer financial losses (due to penalties, civil lawsuits, etc.)
  • as well as production losses
  • equipment damage
  • training time for replacement personnel, and unfavorable publicity.
  • Lack of effective risk control can result in high costs and financial pressure for organizations.
  • The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) may impose fines on firms that violate health and safety laws, which may include the payment of legal expenses as well.
  • In addition, insurance rates might be affected by these penalties.

Types of Risk Assessment

There are number of different forms of risk assessments.

  1. A proper and sufficient fire risk assessment must be conducted at all workplaces.
  2. A risk assessment for manual handling should be done in any job where an employee’s ability to lift, carry, and move items puts him/her at risk for injury or illness.
  3. In workplaces where workers (and others) use computers, laptops, etc., DSE risk assessments must be conducted.
  4. Workers who store, use, or produce hazardous chemicals must do COSHH risk assessments.
  5. Cosh assessments should be conducted in hazardous substance settings.
  6. Task Risk Assessments for specific activities

Depending on the nature of the activities, a company or firm may also opt to complete a Risk Assessment Method Statement (RAMS). Details of the risks are provided, along with step-by-step instructions for completing the job and controlling the identified risks. This method is widely utilized in the buildings and construction sector.

Tips for Helpful Risk Assessment

  • Any change at the workplace conditions should be followed by conducting a proper risk assessment.
  • All levels of the organization must be informed of the results of the risk assessment.
  • To provide a safe and healthy work environment, organizations of all kinds should perform effective risk assessment for all hazards.
  • A good risk assessment should include Injury, illness as well as damp flooring and risky equipment, exposure to toxic chemicals hazard and fire risks are also potential sources of risk.

As a result of performing a good risk assessment for all risks and hazards, the chance of work-related accidents and illnesses can be reduced dramatically. In addition, they assist companies discover methods to minimize health-and-safety concerns.

How to Rank the Risks in Assessment Process?

Risks can be ranked or prioritized in order to assist identify which is the most important and which should be addressed first. Employee exposure and the risk for incident, injury, or disease are generally considered when determining priority. Risks are prioritized in order to create a rating or action list.

The amount of risk cannot be determined in a simple or uniform manner. The same cannot be said for a single approach in every scenario. For each circumstance, the organization must choose which method will be most successful.

Workplace activity, urgency and objective judgement are required to rank risks.

It is possible to conduct an assessment based on knowledge and experience in basic, less complex settings.

Checklists or probability matrix might be beneficial in certain situations. When the problem is more complex, a team of experts is generally required.