Posted by Thelma Marshall, Director, Product, Jan. 28, 2020

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A large percentage of warehouse mishaps and injuries result from human error. It isn’t surprising. Anybody can have a split second of poor judgment or become complacent about the inherent risk of their job.

But there are simple steps managers can take to reduce human error across a facility. Taking proactive action can save your business hundreds of thousands of dollars by avoiding fines, costly accidents, and worker injury.

Begin with these methods.

Awareness and constant reminders

Yes, operators and employees on the warehouse floor should remember the safety-first protocol. But it is so easy to take a shortcut when it comes to safety. One little split-second decision to do a task in a way that is faster or easier can cause costly damage, injury or death.

Managers need to offer constant reminders of safety protocols. It is essential for your business to monitor its operators and identify when they are taking risks so it can be addressed immediately.

Use a software platform that supports proactive action

The most effective way to reduce human error in your operation is to implement an advanced telematics system that warns managers about potential errors before they happen.

  • Today’s telematics platforms monitor all the moving parts of an organization. This can limit the potential for human error in several ways.
    Managers can analyze worker behavior in real-time and deal with operator negligence or complacency before an accident occurs.
  • Equipment safety is ensured by operation-specific safety checklists, which requires each driver to successfully complete their safety check before the equipment will operate.
  • Speed limits are monitored and access to specific areas of the warehouse can be controlled — for example, the software can refuse vehicle entrance to areas designated for pedestrian traffic.
  • Routing can be improved when the software predetermines risks and traffic issues. Managers can reroute the fleet accordingly, ensuring safety, efficiency, and greater productivity.
  • Training and certifications can be kept up to date and monitored for red flags. Ensuring that operators are certified and well-trained plays a big role in avoiding injuries, OSHA violations, and all of the associated costs.

Recognize the financial value in addressing human error

The financial cost of just one forklift impact is about $38,000, plus another $150,000 in indirect costs. Those costs include damages to equipment, property, inventory, workmen’s compensation and equipment downtime for repairs.

Every single mistake or poor split-second decision inside a warehouse operation can impact safety and profitability. Using advanced telematics to monitor human behavior, skills, training, and safety protocol can help managers predict and prevent human errors before they occur.

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