Why an Integrated Workplace Safety and Wellness Program Is Best

Employees are a business’s most valuable asset and keeping them safe and healthy should be a priority for any company. Many businesses have a workplace safety program and a wellness program, but the two programs operate independently of one another – but should they? There are some compelling reasons to integrate the two so that employees can benefit from a more global, holistic approach to staying safe and healthy on the job.

To adequately address health and safety issues, companies need to look not only at whether an employee is performing their job safely but whether they’re healthy and fit enough to do their job without a high risk of injury. Issues like obesity, poor physical fitness and inadequate nutrition make it harder for employees to carry out certain tasks in the workplace.

The link between health and safety

According to research published in the American Journal of Public Health, people who are obese are at higher risk for occupational health issues and injuries. When obese staff are exposed to chemicals on the job, they’re at higher risk for occupational asthma and heart and lung issues compared to a non-obese person. They’re also at greater risk for ergonomic issues and bio-mechanical problems including carpal tunnel syndrome. If companies focus on workplace safety without addressing the obesity issue, the bigger problem remains. A unified approach that integrates occupational safety measures with wellness initiatives that emphasize good nutrition and weight control provides a more effective solution to the problem.

There’s also the issue of back injuries. Back injuries are one of the most common workplace safety issues, and people who are overweight and physically unfit are at higher risk for injuring their back on the job. Most back injuries occur as a result of lifting objects at work and ergonomic issues. Although it’s not possible to prevent all work-related back problems, integrating wellness with safety by emphasizing regular exercise to strengthen muscles in the lower back can reduce back injuries. Integrating workplace safety and wellness offers a more well-rounded approach to preventing back injuries.

What part does wellness play in safety? Wellness programs that focus on stress reduction, smoking cessation and alcohol and drug-related issues are also important for workplace safety. According to a study published in a Canadian publication called The Daily, smokers are at greater risk for being injured at work compared to non-smokers. Among women, the risk was nearly double. Stress does more than just affect employees psychologically – it increases their risk of being injured on the job. Employees who are under stress at home or at work are distracted and less able to focus on doing their job safely. Integrating stress management into a workplace safety program can help reduce the number of injuries and motivate employees to be more productive. Nutrition is another factor that a workplace safety and wellness program should address. Employees who start their day with only a cup of coffee are more prone to blood sugar drops that can lead to workplace injuries. Good nutrition is an integral part of any safety program.

There’s another benefit of merging wellness and workplace safety. Employees are less likely to participate in programs that address workplace hazards than they are wellness programs that focus on personal benefits. Integrating the two makes it more likely that employees will take part.

The bottom line

Combining workplace safety with wellness has a number of benefits for both employees and employers. Most importantly, it helps to create a safer, healthier and more productive workplace – and that’s something every company should strive for.

You’ve Got a Product Idea Like a New Gas Patio Heater, What Stages Are There to Get It to Market?

A 16kw gas patio heater giving a warm comfortable heat – ever wondered what really went into producing it? Everything we take for granted has come from a single idea. Whether it’s your keyboard, your toothbrush or even your patio heater everything started with a bit of imagination and hard work!These ideas could have been inspired from seeing a problem and then solving it. For instance the person who invented the patio heater might have felt cold outside one evening and decided that some warmth was needed.SWOT analysis (Successes, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats)Many of us have ideas so what takes a concept from nothing to sales? What stages are there to go through?The key right at the start is to do as much research as possible. Is there really a need for your brilliant design? Has it been done before? Is the idea patented already? Who is going to put in the investment to take your product idea through to market? Are you the right person to develop it?Think of every angle before you start. Ask friends and family for their views. Look to see what the potential competition are doing, can you improve on what they have done? Is there a reason why there are not doing it?Patent The IdeaIf you’re feeling really confident about your idea talk to someone who can patent or protect your design idea. In the UK a patent professional will lodge an application with the Intellectual Property Office on your behalf.Product DesignerLet’s carry on with the patio heater example, you’ll need to get a Product Designer to help you with the next stage. Working with programs such as CAD (a technical drawing piece of software), a good product designer will help you go through the process of creating your product and making it a reality.They take a systematic approach and can provide mocks up of your finished design in 3D. They can help visualise ways your product will roughly look.This is a great way to solve potential products and often designs will change many times. However, it’s essential to iron out any issues as much as you can before going to a designer – remember they will charge for their time and design.ProductionHopefully you patent has been approved.The next stage is the production or manufacturing of your product. With a patio heater for instance, what materials would you want your heater to be made out of; steel, aluminium, both? These raw materials will often be sourced by the manufacturer.Your product will need to be checked against national safety standards before your patio heater is launched. Several real prototypes will be produced for you. A CE mark will be given if it meets those strict criteria.Ready to sellAt last you are ready to sell your gas patio heater. You could sell it through third parties, through your website or a shop. You might want to include extras in the next model you work on, such as a wooden table.

Most Attractive Products to Promote Online

As an affiliate marketer, one of the biggest challenges is finding products or services to promote and advertise to others. Niche products can be the most profitable, as they generate the largest profit margin, but they can also cause you to fall flat on your face. However, the most important aspect you need to keep in mind when choosing products to promote is the actual nature of the said products. Basically, in the world of affiliate marketing, there are two major types of products: physical and digital.

Physical Products and How They Generate Profit

One thing you need to know about physical products, as an affiliate marketer, is that they only generate up to 10% commissions, and hardly ever more. This means that you will need to sell very expensive products, or many of them, in order to ensure that you can make a living this way. While the refund rates are low, (which means that you will not have to give back money too often), they also tend to be harder to sell, as many times, people prefer to buy physical products from brick and mortar stores rather than the Internet, because they can see them and evaluate them with their own eyes.

Digital Products and How They Generate Profit

Digital products, on the other hand, are more profitable. For instance, commission rates vary from 50% to 80%, a percentage that sellers of physical products cannot even dream of. Digital products present a lot of advantages.

For starters, the merchant does not have to store them physically, and the production costs are basically zero, once an original product was created. The digital copies can be delivered via digital download, so the only costs may be related to rented bandwidth from the hosting service provider and nothing else. This allows merchants to offer higher commissions to affiliates.

Also, it is much easier to sell such products online. After all, this is their natural environment, and it is normal for them to thrive here. People searching for digital products will always search for them on the Internet, and never in brick and mortar stores. Also, the usual lower cost of such products appeals to a larger audience that consumes such items at great speed.

An argument against digital products would be that the refund rates are higher. However, seeing that there are no actual costs related to refunds, this is not such a great drawback. Related to the volume of sales you can run, it is only a small cost you will have to pay as an affiliate marketer.

So, Which One Is Better?

For affiliate marketers, the answer should be obvious. While physical products tend to be more expensive, you are bound to make less money trying to promote them, because of their production costs, and the fact that not everybody shops for them on the Internet. Seeing that digital products offer much more attractive commission rates, and you do not have to worry about having competition in the real world, you should go with digital products.