Protecting Employees

Protecting Employees

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It’s extremely important for entrepreneurs to know what their legal responsibilities are towards their employees when they start bringing new people into the business, particularly if these employees are expected to travel on behalf of the company.

Avoiding risk

‘Duty of Care’ is an obligation which is embedded in most Western countries’ legislation, albeit with great diversity. The concept of Duty of Care for employees is that organisations must make efforts to avoid the risk of reasonably foreseeable dangers to their staff.

Employers are expected to take practical steps to safeguard employees against such threats, which include:

  • Physical and mental health
  • Work injuries and accidents
  • Consequences of job workload and stress
  • Repetitive strain injuries
  • Spread of communicable diseases
  • Safety (tools, equipment, workplace)
  • Security
  • Workplace bullying, harassment and discrimination
  • Fleet management
  • Travel for work purposes
  • Corporate events away from the workplace
  • Pre-employment selection (is the employee fit for work)
  • Negligent hiring (sex offenders, violent personalities)
  • Accuracy of job references for former employees
  • Security and confidentiality of employees’ personal data
  • Fiduciary duties of board members/directors
  • Selection of insurance providers
  • Management of employees’ benefits
  • Due diligence in acquisitions.

As a business owner, do you consider these factors with regard to your employees? Make a list and answer the points above. If there are any gaps, address them.

SOURCE: International SOS

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