If you own a business, especially a blue collar business, then workplace safety should be one of your primary concerns.

I know that it’s easy to get lost in the myriad of other responsibilities that you have, from marketing to sales to project management.

But at the end of the day, nothing is more important than your employee’s safety.

However, sometimes it is hard to balance the safety of your employees with the safety of your checkbook.

So here are 4 easy and inexpensive ways that you can improve workplace safety and all but eliminate on-site accidents.

1. Hire Right the First Time

One of the biggest mistakes that many budding entrepreneurs make is that they hire the wrong people for the job.

Just because a potential candidate is smart and skilled at their craft does not mean that their character and practices are in alignment with your company’s goals.

Be wary of hiring any employees with a propensity to act in excess.

Take the time to really get to know your candidates and make sure that they are going to be the kind of person who takes their job seriously and doesn’t tolerate horseplay and shenanigans on the job.

2. Implement a 0 Tolerance Drug Policy

I know that this particular piece of advice might not be popular, but it is necessary.

If you have employees who are showing up to work under the influence of drugs or alcohol and then operating heavy machinery and other dangerous equipment, you are putting yourself and the rest of your crew at risk.

While you will certainly lose a few “Cool Points” with your team, you will guarantee their safety and security by implementing a one strike drug policy company wide.

3. Provide the Proper Tools and Equipment

If you want your employees to get the job done and get it done right, on time, and safely, then you need to provide them with everything they need for success.

Upgrade your outdated tools, be sure to keep equipment oiled and running properly, and make sure that you immediately replace any broken tools that might lead to workplace injuries.

I know that it is another expense that you probably do not want to incur, but I promise you a new piece of machinery costs far less than a workplace disaster.

4. Practice What You Preach 

One of the biggest problems that I see with entrepreneurs in the 21st century is that they value productivity over safety.

For example, I know many managers and business owners who will praise one team for getting a project done on time even though they broke every regulation and safety protocol to do so.

If you truly value workplace safety and the prolonged health and security of your employees, then you must immediately rewire your attitude.

Safety must truly come first.

No more cutting corners or rewarding speed over security.

You have to prioritize and praise safe work practices over “efficient” practices every time.