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Most brick-and-mortar stores are struggling to deal with the new retail environment and the increasing pressures it’s placing on health and safety.

Retailers already face a complex range of safety risks including customer aggression, manual handling, slips, trips and falls, and working with plant and equipment.

Now, even lower margins are compounding this situation, with scarce resources for dedicated safety activities or personnel and shifts running on skeleton crews with minimal supervision. At the busiest times, stores can be run by part-time or casual employees under pressure, sometimes resulting in shortcuts to get the job done. Training a mixture of full-time, part-time and casual staff to be safe can also be a huge challenge.

Efforts to maximise the selling floor can mean tiny back-of-house areas with unsafe material storage and handling. Add to this potent mix in-store customers, demonstrators, contractors and visitors, and risks multiply. Customer incident rates can be particularly high and can result in expensive insurance costs.

How Verus can help

Verus works with retailers to minimise the effect of such challenges, whether through training programs that deliver the right information quickly and efficiently or coaching managers and supervisors on how to effectively engage and supervise the workforce. We also support retail operations through risk assessments that provide real solutions to prevent injury and illness.

Our Health and Safety Management Systems ensure retail businesses have the right systems in place, and our Health and Safety audits check that operational standards and systems are being followed.