Preparation is very important when dealing with OSHA inspections in an organization. It is important for an organization to be aware of what is to be done and who is going to do it to eliminate possible confusion. In most cases, lack of preparation for an OSHA inspection puts the employees at a disadvantage but implementing an inspections best practices can significantly improve compliance and prepare employees for the OSHA inspection.
Designating Employee Representatives
Before the inspection, it is important for Anderson Associates to prepare employee representatives who will accompany the inspector on the course of the inspection. The law requires an employee authorized representative to join in the inspection and applies in the cases of a requested or an OSHA sanctioned inspection. However, it is important to note that the organization should not sanction for the representatives but they should be chosen by the employees themselves. However, it is important to ensure that the representative is an actual employee. It is important to note that the inspector can settle disputes on the representatives and has the right to include others.
Designating Legal Counsel
OSHA inspections are standard based and follow strict legal guidelines with different legal options in place for employers. As such, it is important in the material day of the inspection for Anderson Associates to seek a legal counsel who is competent in OSHA standards and regulations. A legal counsel creates an environment of sanity during the inspection by advising the safety manager of Anderson Associates on the different approaches that should be taken to ensure compliance as well as counsel on how to approach areas of non-compliance to prevent a case of willful violation of the OSHA standards which carries a hefty fine and a possible incarceration.
Hospitality towards OSHA Inspectors
It is important for the organization to welcome the inspectors and to be nice because they have a duty to do and it is sanctioned by the law. OSHA primary role is to ensure compliance of all the safety standards and to ensure that employers maintain a hazard-free working environment. As such, it right for the employers to be nice to inspectors to avoid raising a negative alarm which could negatively affect the reputation of the organization. Lack of compliance and acceptance of the inspectors will result in suspicions of non-compliance which can negatively affect Anderson Associates reputation. It is important for JA to create a culture that supports OSHA compliance and always ready for the OSHA inspectors which project confidence which can be noted by the inspectors.
Establishment of Procedures and Protocol of Inspection
Consenting the inspection gives the employer an opportunity to set the procedures and the protocol for the inspection which is good for both the inspector and the employer. Cooperation and creation of procedures help Anderson Associates to be able to establish areas that will be inspected and helps the employer to be prepared to learn from the inspection. A positive OSHA inspection culture can ensure that Anderson Associates learns from the inspection and creates positive health and safety changes to promote continuous improvement in terms of employee's safety.
Verification of the OSHA Inspector Identity
It should be a normal standard for Anderson Associates to verify the identity of the inspectors and to ensure that the inspector has the warrant to inspect Anderson Associates business premises. The verification of the Inspector identity helps create a relationship between the parties that will be involved in the inspection. At this stage, the employer and the employee representative should be introduced to create a working relationship that will promote cooperation in the entire inspection.
Provision of Appropriate Safety Gear and Identification Tags
The inspectors and the representatives for the employer and the employee should be provided the necessary safety gear to ensure their safety in their walk around. The safety gears should be accompanied by the identification tags of the inspectors and the employees to ensure that they are identifiable. The employees should be required to offer the necessary assistance to the inspectors in their walk around and respond to any queries.
Avail Safety Records and Measures
All the records that are required to be verified by the inspectors should be availed to the inspectors and ensure high cooperation in the entire process. Denying the inspectors the records of safety and standards could raise an alarm of non-compliance and presenting the document to be verified shows the high confidence of the employer regarding safety and standards in the premises which has a positive impact on the organization safety and standards. The Anderson Associates representative should also show high compliance to all the questions directed to them by the inspectors.
Taking Photos and Notes
During the inspection, the inspector takes photos on different aspects of safety in the organization such as the machine guards in place and the emergency exit plans and response in case of an emergency. Anderson Associates should provide its representative with the necessary equipment to take notes and photographic evidence during the inspection. Taking notes and photographic evidence can help Anderson Associates to learn from the inspection activity on how to improve the employees' health and safety. Further, the notes and photographs can be used to avoid any conflicts in the future regarding the inspection and also can be used by the employer as proof of inspection and certification of safety.
Creating an Interview Room
Apart from the walk around inspection of the premises the inspector carries out on-site interviews with the employees who are geared towards ensuring that the inspection goes on as planned. Besides, Anderson Associates has the right of including an employer representative and an employee representative during the interviews, but if the inspector asks for a private audience with the employees, the wish of the inspector should be granted. It is critical to ensure that JA behaves ethically appropriate and does not conspire with the employees to deceive or withhold information from the inspectors.
Implementation of the Recommendations
Upon the completion of the inspection, the inspector is required to conduct a closing conference where the inspector advises the employer on different areas where safety measures should be implemented and the commendation on the safety measures in place. During the closing conference, it is essential for Anderson Associates to capture all the recommendations and make changes to achieve the required safety standards within the organization.
Meeting OSHA Citations
After the completion of the inspection, Anderson Associates should conform to the fines within six months after the citation, and the copies of the citation should be provided to the employee representatives after they are sent to the employer. Therefore, it is important to note that the employees through their representatives should be involved in the entire course of the OSHA inspection.
Anderson Associates Internal Memo
To: JA CEO Anderson Associates October 14, 2018
From: [Insert Students Name]
CC. Safety Manager
Subject: OSHA Inspection Procedures and Preparation
I believe that motive and preparation play a significant role in achieving the required organization safety and health guards to protect the employees and other third parties within Anderson Associates premises. OSHA inspections have different implications for an organization, and it is vital for Anderson Associates to understand both the cons and pros of regular premises inspections. The OSHA general duty clause which is section 5 (a) (1) of the act requires the employers to provide employees with a work environment that is free from any recognized hazards that can cause damage or death of the employees. As such, every employee has a duty of ensuring workable health and safety procedures that are in accordance with OSHA guidelines.
Advantages of Permitting an OSHA Inspection
Improves Organization Safety Reputation
Permitting OSHA inspection can significantly enhance Anderson Associates safety rating which will help the organization to attract more talented employees. OSHA inspection contributes considerably to the safety and health standards of the employees in an organization. During inspections, organizations get recommendations and citations which help to improve the organization safety and health standards compliance. An organization with excellent safety and health standards reputation can retain and attract employees who have high competency compared to organizations with poor safety and health standards rating by avoiding OSHA compliance. Today, social media and internet access has significantly increased access to information which means that a positive reputation due to OSHA compliance and permitting inspection improves positive organization publicity.
Promotes Safety and Brand Recognition
Permitting OSHA inspections regularly as required by the OSHA enforcement for the covered organizations can encourage safety within Anderson Associates premises. Guaranteed safety due to sound policies and standards that ensure the safety and health of the employees increase employees engagement in the organization activities which improve the organizational outcomes. Organizations that can comply with OSHA standards and create an environment of safety transparency are identified with safe products and high employee energy which increases the recognition of the brand in the market.
Continuous Safety Improvement and Hazard Identification
Permitting the OSHA inspections enables an organization to prepare for a long-term approach of improving safety through scheduled review of the organization safety standards by the OSHA inspectors. OSHA inspectors provide training and mentor organizations to comply and meet OSHA directives on safety and health standards. As such, inspections will have a positive impact on Anderson Associates by ensuring continuous safety measures and standards improvement as technology and business practices change over time.
The disadvantage of Permitting an OSHA Inspection
In some cases, inspectors have high laxity which undermines the quality of their safety and health measures review on an organization. Poor inspectors can cite that an organization is compliant without noting the negative issues identified which undermine the organization safety and health standards and could significantly affect the organization negatively by causing accidents and injuries due to the incompetence of the inspectors. Therefore, inspectors who lack a professional approach to safety and health review on organizations retrogressively affects the organizations inspected. Shoddy inspections have previously been linked with accidents that result to property damage and even loss of life. Therefore, it is essential for Anderson Associates to hire independent safety inspectors to compare their results and recommendations with OSHA inspectors.
According to the US Supreme Court decision on Marshall v. Barlow's, Inc., the employers have been given constitutional right to be able to ask for a warrant before allowing inspectors to inspect their facilities. Unauthorized search and seizure in the United States of America is illegal and asking the inspectors to produce permits has both advantages and disadvantages.
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