You Are Never Too Young For Health And Safety

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Do you remember the excitement of starting your first job? Perhaps it was working at a summer camp in the kitchen ‘dish-pit’, bussing tables at a restaurant, delivering newspapers in your neighbourhood or working as a cashier at the local grocery store. With this first job came your first pay-cheque and the pride of saving for something that you could buy with your own well-earned money. Hopefully these are positive memories for you of your first steps into the world of ‘adult’ work.

As part of your first job do you remember receiving Health and Safety training? This part of your memory may not be as clear because, unfortunately, many young workers are not provided with the necessary introductions to working safely.

All workers, especially inexperienced workers, need to be protected by legislative requirements and by their employer. Someone on their very first job needs more care and attention devoted to their personal safety. As such, it is fundamental that the employer provides resources, training and support to emphasize and prioritize how to work safely.

Workplace Safety North is an excellent on-line resource for employers. It provides up-to-date safety information, promotional materials, Ministry of Labour alerts and valuable prevention tips for Northern Ontario industries. It also provides a comprehensive overview of the requirements for employers to protect young workers in any industry. This material includes two very compelling video clips.

The first relates the tragic story of 18-year-old David Ellis who was killed on the job on his second day of work. Rob Ellis, David’s father, speaks eloquently and painfully about the circumstances and the impact of his son’s death. It is powerful viewing.

The second clip provides an orientation for young workers that any employer can use as part of their introductory health and safety resources. This is a useful and necessary tool for any workplace.

Click here to review Workplace Safety North’s young worker resources.

If you keep your younger self in mind, finding your own way through your early work experience, perhaps it will help you to help others as you develop your own workplace Health and Safety resources.

Discussion Questions:

  1. When and how will you use the young worker safety orientation clip as part of a new employee orientation program?
  2. Why do you think an employer should pay particular attention and provide more support to young workers with regard to health and safety practices?
  3. What types of health and safety training did you receive on your first job? What would you do differently if you were the employer?

HR Analytics – Use it. Own it.


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Source: 3D_creation/Shutterstock

It is time for Human Resources to own the numbers.  After all, the words ‘Human’ and ‘Resources’ are used together for a reason.  Human Resources is not just about leading the humans.  It is also about the powerful management and leadership of resources associated with what the humans bring to the success of the organization.

Our role, as effective Human Resource leaders, is to ensure that we are constant in bringing forth both the human and the resource elements to the strategic management table.  One of the most powerful resource tools at our fingertips is Workforce Analytics.  Using the analytics tool effectively is key to ensuring both functional Human Resources and operational strategic success.

When we fail to bring both parts of the human and resources equation forward, we fail at our jobs as Human Resources leaders.  Failure is pretty easy as noted by Mark Barry, a successful Human Resources leader in the United States.  Mr. Barry offers us a step-by-step approach to how HR Analytics should be used as the resource tool, from the perspective of learning from one’s mistakes.

Click Here to Read the Article

What we learn from our mistakes, is how to change the outcome from failure to one of success by using HR Analytics effectively.  Of the seven Human Resources lessons learned from this article, there are two in particular that bear closer scrutiny.

First, where does HR Analytics report?  If the function of Human Resources is not responsible for the ownership of resources through understanding the people numbers, implementing the metrics, evaluating the measures, and leading everything that is data driven and comes from the organizational workforce for purposes of decision making, then the Human Resources function is not accountable for any of it.  If the Human Resources function is not responsible nor accountable for analytical resources, then that resource part of the Human Resources equation is lost.

When the power of analytical resources goes to others in the organization, Human Resources will have given up the fundamental strength that comes with workforce planning and development, which must be vested within the Human Resources function.

This leads to the second lesson, Human Resources needs to position itself strategically.  Again, if the Human Resources function is able to leverage the knowledge that comes from owning the resource of analytics, we can influence decision-making based on the powerful combination of putting the humans together with the resources to drive organizational success.

Discussion Questions:

  1. If analytics are not vested in the Human Resource function, where would they reside in an organizational structure? What impact will this have on Human Resources?
  2. What are the benefits of having organizational analytics available through the Human Resources function?
  3. Identify three Human Resources activities that can be measured and link directly to effective organizational performance.
  4. Identify three strategic decisions that HR can influence by bringing forward both a human (workforce) and resource (analytical) based plan or proposal to the corporate table.

Links to Learning

No matter what course you are taking, if you are using this textbook, you are learning about learning.

Hopefully, somewhere along the path of your studies, there have been some ‘ah-ha’ moments and perhaps some questions that have heightened your curiosity about adult learning styles and your own learning process.

Source: leungchopan/Shutterstock
Source: leungchopan/Shutterstock

Due to the benefits of digital technology, our collective ability to access learning as part of the Human Resources community has never been greater.  The shift to digital resources has forced us to move from being narrow and focused only on training,  into active and continuously engaged in providing life-long learning opportunities, no matter what organization you may serve.

With so many online resources,  it can be difficult to navigate what may, or may not, be useful. An excellent Canadian resource for on-going learning is The Institute for Performance and Learning, formerly known as the Canadian Society for Training and Development.  Through the institute’s website you will find good resources for work-performance related tools and an opportunity to become part of the larger community of certified learning and training professionals.

Discussion Questions:

  1. How has your own learning style changed over the course of your academic studies?
  2. Why has the Institute for Performance and Learning moved through a re-branding process?
  3. What benefit does additional certification, in the area of Training and Development, provide for you as a Human Resources Professional?