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From Vision to Victory: How Employment Relations And Workplace Health & Safety Planning Sets Your Business Apart

Wayne Semmens - Employsure

Planning is the cornerstone of success for any business, serving as the guiding light that

illuminates the path towards achieving goals and objectives. It provides clarity, direction, and

purpose, enabling businesses to navigate through challenges, capitalise on opportunities,

and make informed decisions. By outlining strategies, setting priorities, and allocating

resources effectively, planning empowers organisations to not only survive but thrive in

dynamic and competitive environments. From goal setting to risk management, planning

fosters coordination, efficiency, and adaptability, laying the groundwork for sustainable

growth and long-term success. In essence, planning is not just a roadmap; it is the

foundation upon which businesses build their future.

While specific statistical comparisons may vary depending on industry, size, and other

factors, the evidence suggests that businesses with defined & implemented plans for

employment relations and health and safety tend to experience improved performance,

profitability, and sustainability compared to those without such. Various studies and surveys

suggest the positive impact of strategic planning in these areas:

1. Employee Satisfaction, Engagement and Productivity:

Businesses with defined plans for employment relations tend to have higher levels of

employee satisfaction, engagement, and productivity. According to Gallup's State of the

Global Workplace report, engaged employees are 17% more productive than their

disengaged counterparts.

Gallup goes on to say, “people want purpose and meaning from their work. They want to be known for what makes them unique. This is what drives employee engagement.”

This, in turn, can positively impact productivity and customer service quality. Having smart

employment relations documentation and procedures can help as opposed to disempower

the culture that drives employee purpose and engagement within an organisation.

2. Reduced Turnover and Recruitment Costs:

Effective employment relations planning can lead to lower turnover rates and reduced

recruitment costs. The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) estimates that

the cost of replacing an employee can range from 50% to 200% of their annual salary,

depending on the role and level of expertise.

3. Risk Reduction and Compliance:

Businesses with structured plans for health and safety are better equipped to identify and

mitigate workplace hazards, reducing the risk of accidents, injuries, and associated costs.

The International Labour Organization (ILO) reports that for every dollar invested in

occupational health and safety, businesses can expect a return of $2.20 to $6.15.

4. Improved Reputation and Brand Image:

Proactive planning for health and safety not only protects employees but also enhances the

reputation and brand image of businesses. According to a study by Cone Communications,

91% of consumers are likely to switch to a brand associated with a good cause, including

workplace safety and employee well-being.

5. Financial Performance:

While direct statistics comparing profitability between businesses with and without defined

plans for employment relations and health and safety may vary, research consistently

demonstrates the positive correlation between strategic planning and financial performance.

A study published in the Journal of Management found that companies with formal strategic

planning processes achieve significantly higher profitability than those without.

6. Stress Reduction:

Knowing what needs to be done and how to do it can alleviate stress and anxiety, promoting

mental well-being and overall satisfaction for business owners, managers and employees.

Despite recognising the benefits of adhering to employment relations and health and safety

regulations, numerous businesses in New Zealand grapple with compliance issues due to

the complex nature of the legislation and regulations governing these areas. The extensive

and constantly evolving legal framework often overwhelms businesses, particularly smaller

to medium enterprises with limited resources and expertise. Compliance with employment

and health and safety laws in New Zealand is a legal requirement. For instance, businesses

must adhere to regulations set forth by the Employment Relations Act 2000, which covers

matters such as minimum wage, holidays, and termination procedures.

However, navigating through the complexities of employment relations and health and safety

requirements demands significant time, effort, and understanding, which many businesses

find challenging to allocate amidst their operational priorities. Consequently, despite

acknowledging the importance of compliance, businesses encounter obstacles in achieving

full adherence to these regulations, leading to potential risks and repercussions such as;

1. Penalties:

Non-compliance can lead to penalties, fines, or legal action from authorities such as the

Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) or the Employment Relations

Authority (ERA). These penalties can be costly and damaging to a company's reputation.

2. Legal Action and Disputes:

Compliance reduces the risk of disputes and legal action arising from issues such as unfair

dismissal, discrimination, or wage disputes. Resolving legal conflicts can be time-consuming,

expensive, and detrimental to business operations, resulting in significant financial losses.

3. Maintaining Reputation:

Compliant businesses are viewed more favourably by employees, customers, and

stakeholders. Upholding fair and lawful employment practices enhances a company's

reputation as a responsible and ethical employer.

4. Increased Accident Rates:

Without clear guidelines, employees may be unaware of potential hazards or how to mitigate

risks, leading to a higher likelihood of workplace accidents and injuries.

5. Employee Dissatisfaction:

A lack of health and safety measures can lead to employee dissatisfaction, absenteeism,

and turnover, negatively impacting morale and productivity.

Overall, compliance with employment relations and workplace health and safety in New

Zealand is essential for businesses to operate ethically, sustainably, and successfully within

the country's regulatory framework. A smart investment in setting your business apart from

your competitors that fail to plan; and thereby plan to fail.

To begin your journey, I have a complimentary consultation service for businesses, which

includes an expert advisor to answer any of your hot potato questions. We will look to

establish whether there are any gaps in your employment relations and health & safety

documentation and procedures. And if so, what are your options moving forward to mitigate


Contact Wayne Semmens

M 027 541 3406


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