If you’ve implemented an incident reporting system to create a safer and more ethical work environment, you want to know if it’s actually working. But, it’s not always obvious.
Making sure the process is working correctly is critical to dealing with various incidents. After all, if you don’t know they happened, it’s hard to follow the proper protocols to handle the situation the right way.
1. Reports Are Being Filed
This is the most obvious way to tell if your company’s incident reporting process is working. Whether it’s a simple injury or an ethical problem, you should be receiving reports. While it might be easy to say that no news is good news, complete silence isn’t a good thing. This means employees either don’t understand the process or they’re afraid to use it. For instance, in the event of an injury, they might be afraid of losing their job.
2. Talk To Employees
Take the time to talk to employees regularly. Divide this task up among your managers. To really get honest answers, switch managers so employees aren’t talking directly to their own manager. If an incident is happening related to a manager, an employee’s more likely to talk to someone else.
Ask them if they understand the process and whether they’d report certain issues. You can create a list of issues to talk to them about in advance.
3. Things Are Improving
If you were receiving a high number of reports initially, but now they’re gradually slowing down, this could be a positive sign that your incident reporting process is working. Not only are employees reporting like they should, but you’re having fewer incidents at your company. This also means you’re handling incident reports correctly. While you’ll likely never reach a time when you have zero reports, seeing your report rate slowly decrease is a good thing.
One thing to keep in mind is if your reports drastically decrease too quickly, it could be a sign that employees aren’t seeing any results from their reports. Instead of continuing to report, they’ve stopped. Review previous reports to see how they were handled.
4. Employees Seem Happier
When incidents are handled properly, employees feel safer and more supported. It also creates a more ethical workplace culture where everyone is responsible for making things better. Having a company that gives them this kind of support and power to make change helps make employees happier. While they may still seem stressed just from their job, they won’t worry nearly as much about what would happen if they get injured or they’re harassed by someone.
5. Incidents Are Handled Quickly
A clear sign your incident reporting process is working is incidents are addressed quickly. No one has to wait for weeks or months for a report to be investigated. After all, if employees see that reports aren’t being investigated, they won’t continue using your system.
If there seems to be too much of a delay, talk with the team that’s supposed to be handling the reports. Find out what’s going on and if need be, change those responsible for investigations or identify additional personnel.
Incident reporting benefits every aspect of your business and shows you ways to improve. Make sure your process is working to get the most benefits.