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Construction Companies’ Not So Hidden Costs of Unsafe Job Sites

Deren Boyd /
Experienced engineer explaining the problems in construction works - development after recession

It goes without saying that operating a non-compliant construction site can increase the risk of worker injury, accidents, and operational hazards. And with regulatory bodies such as OSHA and the EPA handing out citations and fines for non-compliance, there’s the added worry of the financial hammer coming down on the worksite. There are many other not-so-hidden risks involved with ignoring safety compliance protocols that every worksite manager should know.

 Clients Are Watching

Contractors and construction workers rely on a steady stream of projects and assignments, often from returning customers.

If I’m working as a subcontractor at a construction site where the customer can see that my employees are ignoring safety compliance—whether that be from not wearing PPE or violating workplace expectations—can I blame the customer for looking elsewhere next time they need to complete a project?

Why would a client continue investing in a project that accidents, fines, and liability can derail so easily? Ultimately, ignoring safety compliance sends a message of unprofessionalism and destroys a customer’s trust that the project will be completed on time and without incident.

Good Reputations Are Harder To Build Than Bad Ones

And bad reputations spread much faster and broader across communities. People take notice of companies and worksites that ignore safety compliance. In the age of instant communication and user-driven online reviews, it can be tough to dig yourself out of that hole.

Now more than ever, word gets around. And even one non-compliant job can brand your company as the people who employ the wrong workforce, treat employees as disposable, or are careless around equipment. It’s an embarrassing position to be in, and in a competitive economy, a bad reputation can cost a lot of people their livelihoods.

A company’s reputation ultimately comes down to a few descriptors. In our business, the word ‘safety’ has become a useful adjective in describing how we operate, our timeliness, and our efficiency. Deciding on the words you want to be synonymous with your business and then putting the right foot forward to prove their accuracy on the job can go a long way.  

What’s Your Keeping Workers On Board?

At the end of the day, the employees on the ground are the ones whose physical safety is in jeopardy within a non-compliant worksite. In construction, I have seen workers cross the street to another job for only slightly higher pay. There is very little stopping them from walking away from a worksite where they don’t feel protected.

Suppose a foreman or a superintendent decided to cut corners with safety on a project. In that case, the workforce will be the first ones to take notice. It demonstrates to workers how little respect those managers have for their time, labor, and well-being.

With compliance, it all comes back to leadership. The ones overseeing construction projects often aren’t the ones who need to be concerned with their physical safety. But your tradesmen and your labor team make up roughly 80% of your workforce. And their safety and security need to be addressed, or there’s no guarantee they’ll sticking around to complete the job.

KPA Has the Tools to Keep Your Workforce Protected

Looking to avoid all the hidden costs associated with improper compliance? KPA has the tools and resources to ensure that your worksite is a safe environment for all involved. Manage your safety program in an all-in-one system designed to engage your employees, instill a culture of safety, and enable regulatory compliance. Contact us today, and we can show you how.

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