What is the established new employee training schedule at your facility? Is it clear that new employees working in the laboratory need to attend safety training prior to commencing any lab work?
It is ideal to have new employee safety training slotted into new hire orientation on the first or second day of employment. This ensures that safety training occurs in a timely manner and demonstrates the importance of safety training to the company. Having an open policy that safety training will occur within the first week of hire or the first month of hire opens the door to the possibility of lab work initiating prior to training. All employees working in the lab need to attend training on hazard communication, chemical hygiene, biosafety, and emergency procedures, as applicable, prior to initiating any lab work. In addition, specific hands-on training on the established work practices needs to be conducted by the appropriate personnel, possibly the new employee’s supervisor.
Make sure that new employee safety training is taken seriously at your facility. Establishing the importance of safety from the commencement of employment will go a long way in compliance with established work practices.