Senior managers in manufacturing companies are increasing their investment in, and commitment to, health and safety issues and continue to see significant benefits from this, according to a major survey published by EEF, the manufacturers’ organisation.
However, the cost in terms of time and money of complying with health and safety regulation is increasing and manufacturers’ views of its benefits and of their relationship with regulators has become substantially less positive, the survey suggested.
As a result, EEF is challenging the government to become more active in its involvement with Europe on reviewing health and safety directives whilst stepping up the pace of reforming UK health and safety regulations. EEF is also urging government to examine the feasibility of bringing Health and Safety enforcement under a single organisation that would be of particular benefit to all companies, including SMEs.
The report ‘Making Health and Safety Work for Business: removing unnecessary Health and Safety Burdens’ is published ahead of the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) 2013 conference and outlines EEF’s ambition to reduce the cost to business of dealing with health and safety requirements. This is in line with one of EEF’s Growth Ambitions to lower the cost of doing business in Britain and one of the benchmarks underpinning this is to reduce the burden of regulation by 10% over this Parliament.
Terry Woolmer, Head of Health and Safety Policy at EEF, commented: “Industry has made great strides to make health and safety part of business best practice and senior managers are leading by example. Manufacturers are seeing benefits to their business from their investment in health and safety. But at the same time, the cost of complying with health and safety regulation is increasing and manufacturers are becoming less positive about its benefits and their relationship with the regulator.”
Over 200 manufacturers were surveyed for the report, which revealed that management involvement in health and safety matters now exceeds 90% for most measures whilst monitoring of health and safety performance by senior managers has increased by over a quarter in the last seven years. This has resulted in a continued reduction in the number of reported injuries.