OSHA Fire Extinguisher Mounting Height, Placement & Signage Requirements

Fire Extinguisher Safety Image
In some cases, OSHA requires employers to have fire extinguishers at work, and in other cases, employers will choose to provide fire extinguishers. In either scenario, if a company will place portable fire extinguishers in the workplace, it’s important to know OSHA requirements covering mounting fire extinguishers and fire extinguisher placement as well as as OSHA fire extinguisher signage requirements.

We’ll cover each of those three issues–fire extinguisher mounting height, fire extinguisher placement, and fire extinguisher signage requirements–in this article.

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The Training Within Industry Job Methods Program: Encouraging Innovation for Continuous Improvement

The Training Within Industry Job Method program provides a method for making more products, of the same or higher quality, in less time and/or with fewer resources. As author Donald Dinero puts it: “TWI (and Job Methods) helps organizations make the best use of available resources to produce GREATER QUANTITIES of QUALITY PRODUCTS in LESS TIME. What is less obvious is that it does so by leading employees to critical thinking, i.e., by developing a learning organization.”

Interested?

Let’s take a step back before we begin.

Training Within Industry, or TWI, was an American job training program that originated around the time of World War II (and has deeper roots in American job training programs back to World War I). It’s also at the roots of what’s now known as Lean Manufacturing. Training Within Industry had four programs: Job Instruction (JI), Job Methods (JM), Job Relations (JR), and Program Development. Job Instruction, Job Methods, and Job Relations are commonly referred to as the J programs.

This article is one in a series of articles we’ve written looking at Training Within Industry. Previous articles provided an overview of TWI and explained the TWI Job Instruction (JI) program. In this article, we’ll focus on the Job Method (JM) program. We find the Job Method program especially exciting because it’s a great way to empower workers and their supervisors to be creative and innovative at work. These are skills that are increasingly important in the modern workplace and will be even more so in the workplace in the future (dominated by advanced manufacturing, Industry 4.0, the Fourth Industrial Revolution, etc.). So while the TWI Job Method program began in the past, we think it has a lot of value for manufacturing in the present and future.

Before we begin, you may want to know we also have an article that essentially introduces lean manufacturing (What Is Lean? Introducing Employees to Lean Manufacturing). And in particular, the Job Method program has a lot of similarity to Lean’s concept of kaizen for empowering employees to reduce waste, increase value, and improve efficiency, so you may also be interested in our articles What Is Kaizen? and What Is a Kaizen Event?

Finally, in a bit of a coincidence, a lot of the spirit that underlies the Job Methods program and Lean’s concept of kaizen is also covered in our recent article on Motivating Workers to Innovate (And How Your Management Techniques May Be Stifling Innovation), which is based on the book Drive by Daniel Pink. So you may want to add that to the old reading list as well.

And with that said, let’s dive into our introduction to the Training Within Industry Job Method program.

(Credit where credit is due: This article and all articles in our TWI series are largely based on the EXCELLENT Shingo prize winning book Training Within Industry: The Foundation of Lean by Donald A. Dinero. As the saying goes, run don’t want to a bookstore near you to buy a copy and read the whole thing for yourself.)

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Mobile Safety Training Apps: 3 Fundamental Uses

It’s the mobile age, as everyone knows. Not that long ago Apple created the iPhone and now it seems like we do everything on our smart phones or on tablets like the iPad.

How many things do you do with your smart phone these days? Probably a lot, right?

Assuming the answer is yes, doesn’t it make sense to consider mobile safety training at work?

In this article, we explain three simple ways to use mobile safety training apps to improve your overall safety training program.

You might also want to look at our collection of mobile safety training apps on our main webpage.

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ANSI Z490.2–Update on National Standard for Virtual Safety Training

Note: This article has been updated since the original publication to provide additional details.

As you may already know, I’m part of a committee creating an ANSI/ASSE national standard on “virtual” safety training (that means the same thing as “online” safety training).

I’ve been writing a little series of articles to keep you up to date on the progress of this standard and also just to provide a window into how a national standard is created (this is my first time doing it and I was curious myself).

I wrote an earlier article that explains Z490.2 is in creation and explaining some base-level details, such as what is its relation to Z490.1.

In this article, we’re going to give a little peek behind the curtain of what’s been going on since I joined the committee, at least at a high level.

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6 Steps for Creating Effective Manufacturing Training Programs

Want to know how to design, create, and deliver effective manufacturing training programs at work? The kind of manufacturing training that truly helps workers acquire new knowledge and develop new skills they can perform on the job? The kind that will have a real, measurable effect on key business KPIs such as average time to onboard a new employee and even production, revenue, and profit?

We’ve got a pretty simple, six-step formula for success for you to follow in this article. Just put these six steps into action at your manufacturing facility and you’ll have more skilled workers before you know it. The employees will thank you for it (after all, they want to know how to perform their jobs well) and so will your bosses.

This article explains each of the six steps in a good bit of detail below. But if you really want to take a deep-dive, know that we’ve provided links throughout the article so you can explain various aspects even more.

And as if that weren’t enough, we’ve got a free guide to Effective Manufacturing Training you can download right now, or a 30-minute on-demand webinar on Effective Manufacturing training that you can watch too.

And with that, let’s see what there is to know about effective manufacturing training at work.

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Behavior-Based Safety Programs and Training

Behavior-Based Safety Image
Behavior-based safety training programs are important in any company, but they are especially vital in the manufacturing and industrial sectors where heavy machinery can easily hurt you or one of your coworkers.

Promoting a strong workplace safety culture is a team effort because each employee plays a role in ensuring the safety of themselves and their coworkers. Safety training is not only important for keeping workers safe, but it can also lead to higher profits and more satisfied workers.

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Online Hazardous Waste Training: What Is Hazardous Waste?

online hazardous waste training course image-what is hazardous waste?

So what is hazardous waste, you may ask?

Hazardous waste is regulated by the US EPA and The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, or RCRA. The RCRA is a set of environmental regulations that regulates hazardous waste and more. In this article, we provide an overview of the RCRA, explain what a “hazardous waste” is (according to the EPA and RCA, naturally), and offer an online hazardous waste training suggestion for you–our RCRA Introduction online training course, which is part of our larger online Environmental training library. The online course is a great and inexpensive option for those of you who don’t want to read the full article or who want to show the course to a number of workers.

This material in this article and the online course will help your company ensure you’re treating hazardous wastes properly, not running afoul of environmental regulations, and doing your share to protect the environment around us. It will also offer suggestions and samples of hazardous waste training courses.

This article is a continuation of our look at online environmental training courses. You may also want to check our earlier article on The EPA, Environmental Regulations, and Online Training.

Before you begin reading, feel free to watch the short video overview of a few highlights from our Environment, Health, and Safety (EHS) online training library.

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What is Industrial Hygiene & How Does it Contribute to Safety at Work

Industrial Hygiene and Safety Image

Industrial hygiene and safety: ever wonder what industrial hygiene is? Ever wonder how industrial hygienists contribute to safety at work?

Some of you may already be familiar with the field of industrial hygiene. On the other hand, others of you may not, and may wonder what it is, why it exists, and what an industrial hygienist does.

In this article, we’ll provide an introduction to industrial hygiene and present a glimpse into the value this important field within occupational safety and health. Along the way, we’ll define what industrial hygiene is and who performs industrial hygiene. We’ll explain the worksite analysis that’s at the root of industrial hygiene in the workplace. We’ll list different types or categories of occupational hazards that industrial hygienists must identify and control. And we’ll provide some guidance about the hierarchy of control and how it’s used to prioritize different types of hazard control methods.

We’ll even include a list of industrial hygiene professional organizations as well as offer you plenty of free safety downloads, including ones on performing a job hazard analysis, performing an incident investigation, using the hierarchy of controls, and developing and delivering effective safety training.

Even better, we’ll give some samples of an online industrial hygiene training course you can use to train yourself or people at your worksite.

In addition to this helpful information, we offer an extensive library of online health and safety training courses, including many courses that cover topics directly related to the field of industrial hygiene. Feel free to check the course titles we offer for a match at your workplace, or just watch the short overview video drawn from some of our courses to get a better idea of our visually engaging online health and safety training materials before you read on for more specific details about industrial hygiene.

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Safety Management Best Practices: OSHA’s Recommendations for Safety & Health Programs

what is a safety and health management program?

Back in October, 2016, OSHA created a final version of their new guideline for safety and health management programs, titled Recommended Practices for Safety and Health Programs. Around the same time, they published a helpful website full of additional materials related to best practices for safety and health programs.

We write about safety and health management from time to time. Before OSHA had finalized the new guideline, we published an article titled What Is a Safety and Health Program? And we’re also currently in the middle of an extended, multi-article series looking at safety and health management programs, which began with a comparison of different safety and health management standards and guidelines and then focused in on ANSI Z.10. And so it only seemed natural that we’d give you an overview of OSHA’s new safety and health management guideline.

We’d love to hear your opinions of and experiences with the new guideline in particular or with safety and health management in general. There’s a comments section at the bottom of this article–don’t be shy about using it.

Please note: this article is about OSHA’s safety management guideline for non-construction industry employers. See the following link for their Construction Safety Management Guidelines.

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How to Motivate Workers: Developing a More Engaged & Innovative Workforce

Before we begin our article, let’s begin with a teaser to get you interested.

There’s a mismatch between what science knows and what business does.

Daniel Pink, TED Talk, The Puzzle of Motivation

And with that attention-grabbing teaser, let’s return to our article, which ultimately addresses that teaser, explains it, and and offers tips on how to solve the problem…(but know that you can also find the video of that TED Talk near the bottom of this article).

We’re moving into a new era of manufacturing. Or really, we’ve already entered the new era, and things are continuing to change at increasing rates even now.

If you’ve heard people talking about the Fourth Industrial Revolution or Industry 4.0, you’ve already heard about it. The same is true if you’ve heard people talking about advanced manufacturing.

And that’s great, because this era holds a lot of exciting promise. But there’s a problem, too. Many employers are struggling to find enough workers with the necessary advanced skills. If you’ve heard of or read articles about the skills gap, you know what we’re talking about.

As a training company servicing the manufacturing industry, we’re dedicated to providing workforce training materials to help workers develop the skills necessary to help their companies thrive in this new, modern economy. Training can and does provide a measurable leg up in the perpetual manufacturing skill arms race.

But while training is helpful, important, and necessary, it can’t be the entire solution. There’s more to it than just that. For one thing, you’ve got to have workers who are motivated and capable of learning new skills–the skills they need today, and the new skills they will need tomorrow.

All that learning and skill acquisition takes motivation. Motivation to learn, motivation to acquire new skills, and motivation to be creative and innovative. But where does all that motivation come from?

Some of the motivation factor is up to the employee, of course. But employers also play a big role in creating and sustaining an environment that encourages motivation, creativity, innovation, and problem-solving.

In recent years, cognitive scientists, psychologists, behavioral economists, and other experts have learned a lot about what motivates people in their lives and at work. Some of those findings are pretty counter-intuitive.

What’s really stunning is that while some companies are doing the right things on this point, many or even most companies are not. Not only are their management practices, rules, and culture not actively contributing to these desirable workforce characteristics, they’re actively working against and stifling motivation. This is one of the areas of workforce organization where there’s a large gap between what studies and research shows us and what companies really do.

And that’s a shame, since the research is out there and in many cases can be easily applied if companies just look into it and make a few simple changes. Some companies will succeed precisely because they have taken steps to motivate workers to learn and innovate. And other companies will fail not only because they failed to take those steps, but because their culture, rules, and management techniques actually stifled that motivation to learn and create new business value.

In this article, we’re going to give you some tips from Daniel Pink’s book Drive: The Surprising Truth about What Motivates Us, which focuses on how companies can create a workplace environment that nurtures these important traits in their workers.  Pink’s book is based on and compiles research from a lot of scholars in this field, including Dan Ariely (whose book The Upside of Irrationality: the Unexpected Benefits of Defying Logic at Work and at Home we’ve written about in the past).

Before you begin reading about how to motivate workers, feel free to check out the short video overview of samples from our online workforce training courses. And as always, let us know if we can help you with your workforce training programs.

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Better Paper Manufacturing Training Through Visual Learning

There are many ways to make better paper manufacturing training materials, and as a result make it easier for paper manufacturing workers to gain the knowledge and skills they need to perform their jobs well. And that in turn makes the paper manufacturing companies those people work for more productive, efficient, and profitable.

One way is to include well-designed graphics, videos, and other visuals as part of your training materials. That’s true no matter what kind of training you’re talking about: if you’re leading instructor-led training, putting together a PowerPoint presentation, creating written training materials, developing your own eLearning courses for online learning, or getting paper manufacturing online courses from a training provider.

But it’s not entirely simple. You can’t just create any visuals. Some visuals will make your training more effective, and others will make it less effective. There’s a mix of art and science to using the right visuals, and it’s based on what experts know about how people learn.

In the article below, we’ve included some general guidelines that you can follow to create effective visuals for your own training materials. Or, to evaluate training materials made by others. Follow these tips and you’ll dramatically improve the quality of any visuals in your training and, as a result, the effectiveness of your training materials for paper manufacturing employees.

We’ve also written a second article on visuals for paper manufacturing training that extends the lessons in this one.

Before you begin, feel free to watch the short video below to get an idea of what compelling workforce training visuals can do.

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Top 5 Workplace Stress Management Tips (Without Changing Your Workload)

The World Health Organization recently called stress “the health epidemic of the twenty-first century.” That’s pretty big news!

Everyone experiences some amount type of work-related stress. Occasional job stress poses little harm and can even be effective in increasing productivity. However, prolonged stress can be detrimental to both your professional and personal life.

Common symptoms of prolonged workplace stress include low morale, boredom, anxiety, and anger. Stress can even manifest as physical health problems ranging from headaches and stomaches to heart problems.

So we all experience stress. But what makes a difference is how we choose to manage stress. Managing stress is crucial to improving your job performance, staying safe while working, and taking care of your physical and mental health.

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