Why We Manage Health and Safety?

In 1. Foundation, Health and Safety, IGC 1, Management, NEBOSH, NEBOSH IGC by EDCONS SAFETY INSTITUTELeave a Comment

Why is it important to manage Health and Safety in an organization? 

Managing Health and Safety; This question may be asked in several other ways like
Why is it important for an organization to manage health and safety?

  • Why is it important to manage health and safety?
  • What are the legal reasons to manage health and safety?
  • Why is it important to have health and safety management system?

There are several ways to answer the question so Command words should be followed.

Reasons to manage health and safety can be categorized into following:

Moral Reasons also called as Ethical Reasons:



Moral reason is all about the moral duty that every person owes for others.it is not morally acceptable that when people go to work they will be exposed to danger resulting in pains, suffering, injuries and ill health. Workers expect to work in the safe environment and to return back to families and friend at the end of the shift. When a worker is killed, injured or suffer any terrible disease by any accident he is not the only one to suffer but also his family, dependents, friends, and colleagues pass through a massive impact. So it is must for workers to be provided with the reasonable standard of care to prevent them from such sufferings.

or In short:

It is morally unacceptable to expose the worker to danger in return to the work that they do to earn for their families. It is the moral duty of the employer to prevent his workers from pain and sufferings from injuries and ill health by providing them a safe environment to work.

Legal & Social Reasons:

(Note: Though there is a slight difference in legal and social reasons, most people consider it same. This is due to the fact that Laws are made in order to meet societal expectations and protects the right of people. So here I mention it separately but points can be merged occasionally if required.



Legal Reasons:

  • As laws are made to protect human rights so it compels the employer to do what he morally should do in order to take reasonable care of employees.
  • Laws define the framework that governs the conduct of business and organization.
  • it sets rights and responsibilities of employers and employees so that they can be made accountable for that.
  • in order to get a license to operate one need to oblige local laws.
  • Failure to achieve minimum standards set by laws can lead to enforcement actions and prosecution before the court.
  • Legal reasons also include preventive reasons to avoid from enforcement notices such as improvement notice and prohibition notice.
  • It also includes preventing from Punitive damage where the criminal prosecution due to breaches of legal duty may result in a fine for organizations and imprisonment or fine or both to individuals.
  • There is also a compensatory effect of law where employees are able to sue in civil courts for compensations claims by proving negligence of the employer.

Or In short

There are strict legal obligations imposed on employers and employees relating to health & safety. Legal reasons are based upon compliance with the national laws and international standards to avoid preventive, punitive and compensatory damages as a result of prosecution before the court. It also set the boundaries and govern the rules for the conduct of business.

Social Reasons:



Society expectations are different in terms of standards of deliverance but as a minimum, all societies demand safe working environment that includes safe place of work with safe access and egress, safe plant and equipment, safe system of work, adequate training and supervision and competent employees. Expectations of society tend to increase with time and these are often translated in laws and standards. The organization needs to improve the standard of behavior to meet these higher expectations.

Or In short

Social reasons relate to social expectations that demand from employer to provide a safe place of work, safe plant and equipment, safe systems of work, competent workers and a high standard of training and supervision.Organization tends to bring improvements in standards in order to meet these expectations.

Economic reasons also called as Financial reasons:

Though most employers think health and safety arrangement as an additional cost, researchers show that it is not true because such arrangements prevent us from so many losses caused by accidents due to the absence of such arrangements. Accidents and ill health result in various direct and indirect cost.

Some of the cost can be insured against but researches show that uninsured cost can be 8 to 36 times the insured cost (also known as iceberg principle).So economic reasons include the following



  •  An organization can enjoy the economic benefits due to the highly motivated workforce that may result in increased rate and quality of products and services.
  • Competitive edge by maintaining the image and reputation of the organization with stakeholders and law staff turnover rate
  • Cost avoidance of
    –  Accident investigation
    –  Hiring legal services to face the prosecution in courts
    –  Hiring and training of replacement staff
    –  Remedial actions or repair of plant, equipment, and location
  • Similarly, reduction in insurance premium and helps to secure favorable terms for insurance

Or In short

Accidents and ill health result in various direct and indirect cost. Some of the cost can be insured against and most cannot be insured. To prevent from such financial losses and damage to the profitability of an organization it is required to manage health and safety to avoid accidents and ill health.

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