Health and safety regulations can change rapidly and complying with the law while keeping everyone safe can be incredibly difficult for any business no matter how big or small.
After the cap on fines for health and safety breaches was lifted in March 2015, avoidable incidents that a company is liable for can mean unlimited penalties. This can have a devastating impact on the finances and reputation of a business.
When it comes to having a health and safety specialist on hand to ensure compliance and offer advice on keeping everyone safe at work, should you outsource this or keep it in-house? In this week’s blog, we are going to look at the advantages of each approach and what might be best for your company.
Advantages of Outsourcing
For most SME’s outsourcing is the most cost-effective and efficient way to have expert health and safety advice.
In many cases, a full-time employee dedicated to health and safety just isn’t necessary especially if it is in a fairly low-risk sector. Outsourcing this role and being able to get advice and help when needed as opposed to shelling out a full-time salary makes better sense for many companies.
In return for outsourcing this role, SME’s get expert advice when needed, bespoke training and also save money too.
Advantages of Recruiting
That being said, for some businesses recruiting an ‘in-house’ health and safety specialist has many advantages.
For growing companies that are expanding their services or opening new premises, having a health and safety specialist that knows the business and the day-to-day risks is preferable as they will be constantly available even at short notice. In the construction sector, this is particularly important due to the everyday risks that workers in this field experience.
Having an internal health and safety manager also means that there is a guaranteed go-to person for everyone in the company as well.
What Is Best for Your Business?
If your company is a small one that is still finding its feet or starting to grow then outsourcing your health and safety needs is better from a financial point of view but it also means that you have expert advice when you need it. It can be hard for some SME’s to justify the salary of a full-time (or even part-time) health and safety manager particularly if the company is in its early stages of development.
For larger companies or those that are experiencing fast growth then having a health and safety speciality in-house is often the better approach. It means that they have a solid understanding of the inner workings of the business, it’s personnel and the specific health and safety problems that it faces.
Does your company outsource its health and safety needs or is it kept internal with one or even more employees? What approach do you think works best for small, medium and larger companies?
Let us know your thoughts.