One of the most effective programs that management can use to reduce injuries and make the workplace safer is to utilize a job hazard analysis, JHA, program. To ensure that this program is effective, it is essential that management follow the details and guidelines of the JHA program.

In this program, it is important for readers to recognize that the word "job" represents a task that the employee performs and the task/job has a beginning and an end. A "job" does not represent the employee's occupation or job title such as an electrician or forklift operator. An electrician installs wiring, installs switch boxes, replaces lights, installs interlocks, etc. Each one of these tasks is a "job". The same logic applies to the forklift operator and any other occupation. The forklift operator loads and unloads trailers, charges or changes batteries, inspects the forklift, operates the forklift, etc. The guidelines identified below will aid management and employees in making each job safer to perform.

The efforts expended by management and employees in the JHA program will prove to be very effective. The following are the benefits that management and employees can expect from the JHA program:

  • Each job/task becomes more defined so that they are performed correctly and safely.

  • The program can be used for new employee orientation or job reassignment so that the assigned job is safely outlined for the worker and the potential hazards are identified.

  • Newly assigned employees can learn the safe and correct way of performing a job that they are unfamiliar with.

  • Ergonomic issues are identified in the JHA process for correction or control.

  • Workers' compensation costs are reduced as a result of fewer injuries and illnesses occurring within the facility.

  • The facility/worksite can more easily come into compliance with regulations and industry "best practices".

  • The program requires the participation of employee's which can create greater safety awareness.

  • Machines and operations will become safer as a result of evaluation and correction during the JHA.

  • Jobs/tasks that are performed occasionally or infrequently can be reviewed by the supervisor and affected employee's for the correct safety procedures before commencing.

  • Completed JHA's can be reviewed with employees each month at a work site before they perform a specific task.

  • If a facility desires to be a specifically-recognized location by becoming an OSHA Voluntary Protection Worksite, the JHA program is a key to this recognition.

I - LAYING THE GROUNDWORK

  1. First, ensure that management is briefed on the entire program and understands that committing to this program authorizes the use of time and effort by supervisors and employees to complete JHA's.

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