No matter how experienced the technician is, the importance of on-the-job safety should never be downplayed. Your techs spend hours driving, working with electrical components, lifting, bending, and handling other work-related tasks each day - all while trying to stay in communication with your office. How can you be sure that they're working safely? Simple measures like regularly training your employees, utilizing field service dispatch software services, or implementing mobile GPS technologies can make a huge difference. To help you create an improved work safety plan, here are five smart practices for protecting your field techs.
1. Get back to the basics with lifting
Back injuries account for the majority of workers comp incidents in America. It's too easy for a technician to become careless and engage in improper lifting tactics. To avoid these problems, it's important to regularly train your employees on how to correctly bend and lift on the job. Remind your team to always bend at the knees and keep the load close to the body for optimal lumbar support. Lifting should primarily be done with the legs, and if a load is too heavy, your technicians should never hesitate to ask for help. Never allow your employees to twist or bend sideways while lifting, or raise a load above shoulder height.
2. Use a field service dispatch software
When driving to a job site, your tech should be free from distractions. If they are required to constantly make and answer phone calls with regards to scheduling and customer needs, they'll be unable to focus on safe driving strategies. A field service dispatch software program can instantly provide your technician with the information that he or she needs in order to go to the correct job site and get the job done efficiently and effectively. These softwares offer hands-free communication and real-time updates on schedules without compromising your driver's safety.
3. Implement GPS tracking systems
Integrating a GPS tracking system into your field service dispatch software program can take safety to the next level. By interfacing with technician schedules, your GPS system can guide your crew to the correct job site on the fastest route without requiring a driver to use a map, or manually enter an address into a routing system. Additionally, GPS technologies can allow you to see where your technicians are at all times, and monitor their speeds on the road. When your techs know that "Big Brother" is watching, they'll be more inclined to drive at the legal speed limit.
4. Refresh your techs on electrical safety
After years of working with electrical components, your technicians may become complacent in their work strategies. To prevent this from happening, it's wise to host regular training sessions that focus on electrical safety. Technicians should be instructed to always use permanent branch circuits when possible. If extension cords are needed, they should only be used temporarily to avoid fire and tripping hazards. Extensions should also be rated high enough to supply a current to the device being used.
5. Use mobile field software for communications
Stop your techs from feeling the need to call the office, text status updates to your service manager, or phone your warehouse for parts while driving. Mobile field software solutions will allow your techs to update their job status, check inventory, request parts, and submit work orders with a few clicks - all before getting back behind the wheel and heading to the next job.
Ultimately, technician safety begins with you. By frequently training your team and utilizing a good field service dispatch software, you can ensure that your techs are protected on-the-job.
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