The National Safety Survey 2020 sees safety professionals’ responsibilities shift as upcoming national elections and volatile economic conditions hover on the horizon.
So much can change in a year. Last year’s National Safety Survey examined the difference in titles and responsibilities safety professionals have. This year, the dynamics of health and safety within an organization have rapidly evolved since the novel coronavirus has brought illness prevention to the forefront of every conversation.
The year 2020 has brought about an unprecedented set of challenges to the safety industry. The COVID-19 pandemic has required professionals to focus their efforts on illness prevention to ensure business continuity while balancing ongoing “traditional” tasks.
The future of safety profession is evolving, and national elections are right around the corner. Each year, EHS Today surveys its audience of senior safety leaders on what they see as the biggest obstacles facing the industry today, and what they’re doing to overcome them.
This year’s survey was unique as it was completed in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Hundreds of respondents told EHS Today about what drives their passion as leaders and how government officials can support their efforts to keep American workers safe.
Identifying the biggest challenge that faces safety professionals today is like asking a world-class safety leader if it’s possible to only focus on one key performance indicator (KPI). The industry is responsible for myriad of tasks that require working with multiple stakeholders throughout the organization from the C-suite to human resources to operations.
Respondents to this year’s survey indicated a slight shift to areas other than traditional safety (86%) at their organizations, down from 92% in 2019. As the pandemic puts occupational health in the spotlight, safety professionals indicate that 86% of their employers prioritize support for safety, which is unchanged year-over-year.
When asked if their employer prioritizes safety over production or other business demands, 74% of respondents said that is the case, down 1% from 2019’s numbers. Organizational support can be evidenced in many ways, most notably through budget.EHS Today