Preventing Injuries in the Workplace by Using a Job Hazard Analysis

Sometimes employers may not feel that they can control the number of injuries in the workplace. However, there are tools that they may not
realize are at their disposal to be two steps ahead of hazards and potential injuries. One such tool is the Job Hazard Analysis. This OSHA-endorsed approach to preventing injuries could ultimately save your company from a loss in productivity and profit due to injury.

The role of the Job Hazard Analysis is to break down each task and identify potential hazards of each action.  By adding this tool to your
safety program, and involving your employees in the process, you reinforce safety as a priority for your company.

The basis for creating an effective Job Hazard Analysis is taking necessary time to do a thorough analysis for each task performed by your employees. Obviously, this can be time-consuming, so your best bet is to identify the functions that pose the greatest risks first and start there. Those jobs can be identified by listing previous injuries and close call situations, where injury was just avoided.

Once you identify the at-risk function, the next step is to break down the job into step-by-step instructions. Have a knowledgeable employee
demonstrate the steps of that function. Then together with the employee, identify potential hazards/ what could go wrong/ worst case scenarios
for each task. It is important to include human error in the equation, without placing blame on the employees, but accepting that mistakes can
be made. Once you have identified each potential hazard, take a solutions based approach for safety protocols. This may mean introducing
Personal Protective Equipment or other safety initiatives to prevent injury.

A successful Job Hazard Analysis will provide heightened awareness to the employer and employees for which processes have greater potential to do harm, strengthen your safety program and training procedures, reduce worker’s compensation costs, and reduce injuries in the workplace.

For Additional Information regarding the Job Hazard Analysis:

Basic Job Hazard Analysis OSHA form:

OSHA Publication 3071: