Designed to clarify roles and responsibilities regarding lifting devices, and to assist managerial staff with compliance on Health and Safety Law. This program will help in identifying and eliminating hazards in addition to implementing safe operating procedures. This program can be tailored to address your company’s specific needs.


The Importance of Supervisor Training

By Michael J. Palladino, CRSP, Provincial Training Centre

Over the years, I have provided material handling equipment training in virtually all industry sectors across Canada. While each is different by nature of its business, I continue to notice one similarity among all sectors - the lack of training at the supervisory level. It is important that work floor employees are adequately and effectively trained in safe operating procedures, and are aware of accompanying regulations. But the law does not stop there. In situations where supervisors have not been trained in this area, the effectiveness of any formal training provided to work floor employees is greatly diminished. This is not to say that the operator cannot be relied upon to practice safe operating procedures, but rather that the uninformed supervisor is not able to provide the ongoing guidance, monitoring, and follow-up necessary to maintain a safe work environment. On the other hand, in companies where operators and supervisors are formally trained, the effectiveness of both classroom and hands-on training is significantly enhanced. The informed supervisor is able to provide enforcement and follow-up of safe operating procedures on the work floor. To operate in compliance with the Occupational Health and Safety Act, an employer must train both operators and supervisors. Supervisors must know potential hazards of the equipment being used and the proper procedures for all equipment. Let me stress that motivation for training supervisors and operators should not be based solely on the legal requirements. First, training is the most effective way to ensure a safe work environment. Second, the informed and trained supervisor enforces and sustains the new knowledge and skills acquired from the training program, thereby making training more effective. In terms of financial outlay, the investment in proper training is a tiny fraction of the potential costs related to product damage, insurance premiums, or legal liability. In terms of human cost, proper training can help minimize the incident of accidents, both minor and tragic. When employees sense that their employer is genuinely concerned about their health and safety, they are more focused on the job to be done.