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Ways Health and Safety Can Lead to Profitable Businesses

Published October 18, 2023 (last updated on April 17, 2024) | Adam Wyatt - Copywriter and Content Creator


There are more than a few big misconceptions when it comes to health and safety at work. One of the biggest is that health and safety only impacts a business’s profitability when it goes wrong. Many businesses treat health and safety as a way to avoid the financial losses that come with claims. It’s seen as a way of protecting what they already have.  Beyond avoiding claims and costly financial penalties, is there more to gain from nailing health and safety? It’s time to explore the connection between a profitable business and health and safety.

A profitable business is no accident   

Sometimes there’s a tendency to view health and safety as a hindrance – either because it involves an investment of time and money, or because health and safety policies may obstruct other business processes. Ultimately, the feeling is that health and safety comes at a cost to profitability. In reality, things couldn’t be further from the truth. 

Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment study found that businesses with better track records for health and safety also have significantly higher profits. In a nutshell, a safe and healthy business is more likely to have a healthy profit and loss sheet. Why? Let’s take a closer look.

The hidden benefits

Putting your best foot forward with health and safety will benefit your business in a host of ways (some more obvious than others). Here’s a breakdown of the advantages that come with embracing your health and safety responsibilities:  

  • Increased efficiencies: An important part of managing risks is identifying any hazardous manual tasks and, whenever possible, automating them. For example, a factory might use a robotic arm to lift and move heavy objects on an assembly line, reducing the risk of musculoskeletal injuries caused by manual handling. As well as eliminating risks, automation can free up staff to perform other high-value tasks and add efficiency to your work systems.  

  • Better leadership: There’s often a direct relationship between health and safety compliance and good leadership. When a workplace or the work itself is unsafe, it often means that employees are not being well-managed. On the other hand, leaders who successfully manage their health and safety obligations tend to be forward-thinking, intentional in their actions and good at solving problems, all of which bodes well for business.

  • Enhanced reputation: A good reputation for health and safety makes a business more trustworthy and attractive to all stakeholders. Putting safety first can generate positive publicity and enhance a business’s standing in the local community. If you want to attract and retain customers, you need to engender customer confidence. Nailing health and safety is a great place to start.   

  • Improved recruitment and retention: Businesses with a robust approach to health and safety are more likely to attract and retain top-level talent. This is because employees want to work for companies that are committed to their safety and well-being. This also helps you to satisfy existing staff and avoid the costs associated with training new recruits.  

  • Greater creativity: Believe it or not, building a healthy and safe work environment can inspire creativity. Employees who feel well cared for are more comfortable trying new things and sharing original ideas. In other words, when employees feel safe and protected, they are more likely to be creative and innovative. 

A risk-free investment 

If you’re looking for a way to boost your profits, improving your workplace health and safety is one of the smartest business decisions you can make.   Here’s a simple tip: instead of viewing health and safety as a cost, view it as an investment. Every dollar you spend will not only safeguard your business from accidents, downtime and financial penalties, but also create the conditions for your staff to reach its their potential.  

WHS advice you can trust

As a business owner, you have a responsibility to provide a healthy and safe work environment for all your staff. With constantly changing legislation and regulations, it can be tricky for you to keep up with your duties. Unsure of your obligations? Don’t worry, we are.

Thousands of Kiwi business owners trust Employsure for health and safety at work support. With our Advice Line free of cost for all business owners, call us on 0800 450 752 to get all your difficult health and safety questions answered by the

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