Essentials for New Employee Safety Training & Orientation

workers in hard hats at construction site

Business has been great, and you need to hire additional people to keep up with the volume. You already have a strong safety culture at your operation, and want to keep that going & make your new employees feel a part of that culture. That’s where new employee safety training and orientation comes in.

There are three major milestones for new employee safety training:

  • Introductory – general safety training, applicable to all jobs
  • Evaluation – on-the-job training, job specific
  • Testing and certification

Let’s look at each element in a little more detail.

Introductory Safety Training for New Employees

construction worker in safety harness near craneIntroductory safety training will be at a high level, somewhat general in scope, and applicable to all new employees. This should cover things such as site rules and regulations, attendance policies, accident reporting, alarms and warning signals, hazardous chemicals or areas on site, personal protective equipment (PPE) and clothing requirements, and other information specific to your operations and organization.

Also key to the introductory training.is an introduction to management commitment to safety. It is always helpful if a senior manager can talk to the individual or group about the importance of safety at the site. This could very well be the new employee’s first exposure to management’s vision for the safety culture, and it certainly should not be the last.

Evaluation of New Employee Training Progress

men in hard hats working with woodThis is the stage where the new employee will begin his job specific training. Here they will learn the processes and procedures relevant to the specific job to be done, and will be introduced to the key safety aspects of doing the job. This training is normally conducted by a senior operator, experienced and certified to do the job in question.

Safety training will be very specific here. It can include items like what PPE is necessary and when and where it should be worn. It will involve demonstrations on how to safely operate equipment and machinery, and how to handle the various products used in the operations.

There should also be visible and frequent management interaction during the evaluation phase of safety training. This will help reinforce the training, and once again demonstrate management commitment to the safety culture.

Testing and Certification of Safety Training

During the on-the-job training there are normally several meetings between the trainer and safety and operations managers to discuss training progress. A review of the new employee’s safety knowledge should also be covered during each of these meetings.

new employees attending orientation sessionOnce there is agreement between the trainer and the management team that the employee has mastered the requirements of the job, there should be a final test prior to certification. This test will typically be in two parts: Written and hands-on.

The written test will check the employee’s understanding of the process and procedures he will be following. It should review key safety aspects of his training. Once the employee passes the written portion of the test, a hands-on evaluation should be conducted. Here, the employee will demonstrate one’s ability to safely perform all the duties related to his job. If the evaluation team is not satisfied with the employee’s  performance, retraining must be done.

How Advanced Consulting & Training Can Help

New employee training and orientation is highly valuable to providing a safe workplace for all employees. Companies should take this responsibility very seriously, and appropriate safety training is vital element to this commitment to safety. With a new employee you have a blank slate, and this is the best opportunity to ingrain the importance of safety.

Want to know more or have Advanced Consulting & Training put together an effective, impactful New Employee Safety Training program for your organization? Contact us today to find out how.