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Violence in the Workplace
Insights From Mettl Company Insights

There’s a dire need to understand gender differences in workplace safety because women are underrepresented in some industries like technology, construction, and manufacturing. Since such streams are highly competitive, women candidates are seen to come with a lot of cost on investments and seen as a liability rather than an asset- like extra expenditure on maternity leave, conveyance, and security and safety measures. It has given form to various stereotypes that may be women candidates are not up to the mark in terms of skills and capabilities and somewhere the lack of organization’s motive and resources get camouflaged.    

By virtue of the biological differences and societal norms, gender has a crucial role to play in designing strategies and workspaces. For example, they can’t stay back very late into the night for some important project with a deadline without risking her safety. Even if they have to, companies have to provide cab facilities and other safety measures to ensure they have easy commute time back home.   

This also holds true for professionals with diversity like religion, color, or race who have to be taken into consideration for workplace safety standards.   

What can organizations do to avoid workplace violence? 

  • Identification of High-risk Jobs:

The first step comes with the understanding of what constitutes the factors that make a job high-risk like being a woman working in isolation, or people working with a lot of different people from different strata of society, or jobs that include money, and so on. Such roles have to be identified and requisite procedures followed to avoid any unseen or untoward events.

  • Laid-down Processes:

Leave nothing to the interpretational differences or benefit of doubt in dealing with workplace violence and assault. Establish SOPs, documented manuals, or workplace safety programs which are strictly a part of the orientation, HR processes, and training. Moreover, gender sensitization classes or sessions should be held throughout the year and not as a one-off exercise. If a woman is working alone or with a lot of different people, proper measures like security authorities. identification checking, and safety procedures have to be followed.   

  • Open communication Channels:

There should be a strict and zero-tolerance policy towards any kind of workplace assault. Organizational committees have to constituted which should be functioning continuously, irrespective of violence cases being there or not, with proper allocation of members to manage it. There should be open-door policy to reach authorities in an organization, laid-down rules for investigation, remedy, and resolution of any kind of workplace violence issues.

  • Avoid Taking Sides:

HR and the employers must avoid taking sides at all costs and never give into impressions, self-beliefs, and personal equations with people involved. Establish a fair redressal committee to address workplace violence and abuse issues and involve your hired legal party wherever necessary. Take in confidence each party and talk to their families if need be to help them place their trust in you to offer honest and genuine resolutions without biases.

Topics: HR News and Trends

Originally published July 12 2019,updated May 27 2020

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