Creating a safe environment is critical to field service work, especially when you have workers going on site. However, it takes everyone involved — technicians, companies, and Field Nation — to help make on-site work as safe as possible.
Build specific work order details
Work order details are a great place to start with ensuring on-site safety. Including key details for each work order can go a long way to communicate any hazards, unknowns, and instructions for your technician.
Start with clear directions
When you create a work order, make sure your directions are clear and easy to follow. Ensure that you don’t leave any room for confusion and highlight any safety protocols the technician should follow once they’re on-site.
For example, if they need to hang a new TV at the job site, include detailed instructions for every step of the job. Rather than simply writing “replace TV” on the work order, say something like, ”Take down the TV on the North wall above the red couch and install the new TV in its place, which will be with the front desk person.”
Creating detailed work orders is the first step to developing communication and eliminating room for hazardous errors.
Add location type
Technicians are interested in different information regarding work sites than they used to be. Try to be clear about the location type, especially if social distancing is difficult or impossible. Reducing uncertainty by adding these details can make your work order more likely to get filled.
Follow basic safety protocols
Safety is of the utmost importance to everyone on a work order, and there are a few key things to communicate with your team before they go on-site.
If there is any electrical work (or the possibility of exposed wiring) on-site, communicate that in the work order details and with the technician to ensure they possess the right expertise for the work. Be sure the technician is aware of the proper safety steps to take when they’re working on each order.
It’s important that whichever technician you choose has the right tools available. For example, if they’re doing low-voltage work, they need to know the local electric company, wear safety goggles, have steel-toed boots, and probably possess some wiring tools in order to be effective and safe on-site.
This is also critical if the technician needs to work on a ladder or in an otherwise dangerous location. Make sure your team on-site is aware of any hazards and can communicate them to the technician before work begins.
Finally, never put a technician’s onsite safety at risk to get a work order completed and ensure the proper equipment is used by someone who is qualified to use it.
Make sure you’re covered with the right insurance
Field Nation provides general liability insurance for some work orders on our platform, which covers clients in the case of damaged property or negligent work on-site. However, this does not cover technician injuries. Many technicians decide to purchase their own workers’ compensation insurance to protect wages and pay for injuries in case something goes wrong on-site. Some states require this, although many don’t. Having the right insurance on each work order is crucial in the event that something goes wrong and a technician or someone on-site is injured.
Field Nation also offers technicians on our platform additional coverage through Occupational Accident Insurance (OAI). OAI is different than workers’ compensation but covers the medical costs, lost wages, and rehabilitation from injuries of an independent contractor who is injured during a contract job. In addition to benefiting technicians, OAI also benefits companies that use contractors by offering claims protection in the event of an accident. Clients who want an extra layer of protection in an event of an accident can add OAI coverage.
Insurance is good to have but ensuring safety protocol is followed on-site is the best approach for eliminating safety issues or injuries during work order completion.
Keep the lines of communication open
Ensuring safety on-site is a team effort and one that is made easier by clear communication and safety training.
Make sure everyone is on the same page before work begins and that the whole team is aware of the risks involved in the job so they can be prepared.
Consider COVID-19 safety precautions
As states and provinces begin to reopen, safety remains our top priority. With new guidelines and recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), we thought it would be a good time to revisit our own COVID-19-related safety recommendations. We ask that everyone review these recommendations to help keep our communities safe.
We thank you for considering worker safety as you plan for the rest of the year. Field Nation is committed to giving you the insight and clarity you need to keep your business moving forward. To learn more about ensuring safety on-site, visit the National Safety Council’s website to read their helpful guides on safety in the workplace.