Workplace safety professionals focus on finding ways to keep the workplace safe for employees, employers, and the general public. While this might seem like a tall order, safety professionals are not solely responsible for maintaining health and safety standards in the workplace.
Rather, safety is everyone’s responsibility, and a safety professional’s job is to oversee and administer a workplace safety program. Although they’re not fully responsible for workplace safety, safety professionals—armed with the right tools at their disposal, knowledge of regulations, and proper training—can make a huge difference in the injury and death rates at a company.
Regardless of the industry, company owners, presidents, and CEOs rely on safety professionals to research and confirm the safety and health regulations set by government agencies at the state, federal, and local level. Health and safety specialists then use this knowledge to keep employees and the facility in compliance.
Does a career as a safety professional interest you? Read on to learn more about the daily life of a safety professional below.
Safety Professional Requirements
The desire to be professionally involved in promoting a safety culture within the workplace often comes from one’s caring nature toward colleagues, from taking a relevant course of study, or from recognizing the need to step-up the overall safety of the current work environment.
There are a few requirements you’ll need to have before applying for the job. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, you need an associate or bachelor’s degree to become a safety professional. If you want a leg up, you can further your education by enrolling at an OSHA Training Institute to complete certificate programs and jumpstart a career in EHS.
A successful safety specialist will have a deep knowledge of OSHA workplace standards. OSHA standards are used to prevent injuries, loss of work hours, and loss of profit for the company. Remember that OSHA standards are the minimum requirements, and companies can go above and beyond to keep employees safe. By regularly taking stock of potential hazards and what-ifs, safety professionals can advise how best to correct hazards before injuries occur.
The Daily Life of a Safety Professional
As a safety professional, you must demonstrate a mastery of OSHA’s rules and regulations (particularly the ones that are relevant to your specific industry)—including related industrial hygiene, health, and safety principles.
As a safety professional, you should expect fieldwork, frequent travel, and even irregular work hours. Whether your company works in construction, pharmaceuticals, technology, or other general industries, what matters most is that you understand the principles behind these regulations and address issues accordingly.
You will be tasked with:
- Keeping track of upcoming regulatory deadlines
- Staying on top of new developments in the industry
- Developing safety programs in line with your company’s specific needs
- Managing your company’s personal protective equipment, including helmets, gloves, masks, respirators and body harnesses.
Additionally safety professionals regularly consult with industry experts and communicate with company management regarding the status of their ongoing safety initiatives.
Prepare for Your Safety Career in Construction
The best way to start preparing for your safety career is by reading about OSHA’s rules and regulations! For more in-depth information than what you will find with an online search, consider signing up our 10- or 30-hour OSHA construction training courses. Visit OSHACampus for all of your safety training needs!