Safety Comes First
At CoolSys, we work hard to create a company-wide safety culture that benefits everyone. Zach Bates, director of environmental, health and safety (EHS), and the entire Safety team are gearing up for some exciting and important initiatives. Zach and his team are passionate about keeping our hardworking CoolSys employees safe and intend to help improve the safety culture.
Zach grew up in a household of safety. Some of his earliest memories involve him sitting at the dinner table with his dad, who served as an OSHA inspector for 35 years. Zach isn’t shy to admit he absorbed a lot of what his dad knew about health and safety from a young age. If you ask Zach, he’ll jokingly say he was “brainwashed into all things safety from the start.”
Married with three children, Zach joined CoolSys in May after an extensive EHS consulting and manufacturing career. He brings knowledge about behavior-based safety programs and safety management systems to his position.
A recent initiative led by the Safety team is the ongoing implementation of Safety Champions. Safety Champions are responsible for weekly safety inspections, providing hands-on safety for all new technicians and are available on-site for incidents. We connect a local CoolSys Safety Champion with anyone on-site that has a safety concern or question.
Safety Champions will come into regional training centers beginning in December. Zach and his team of Regional Managers will lead extensive safety training, providing the Safety Champions with relevant knowledge and tools to succeed in the role.
Computer-based Safety Programs
The Safety team is looking to expand the computer-based safety programs that are currently in place. The aim is to make the programs more in-depth and interactive so that employees can get the most valuable training possible.
Transitional Work Programs
When an employee is out of work due to a workplace injury, it can also harm their mental health and financial well-being. Zach and his team have created a transitional return-to-work program to address this issue.
“It’s important to get our employees healthy—that’s our priority. Once they’re on the road to recovery, we aim to make accommodations for them to return to work and reinstate their value as a staff member,” Zach says.
Supervisors will look at any physician-instructed work restrictions assigned to the employee and determine if adequate accommodations are available. If the employee cannot fully return to their previous role, Zach and his team identify tasks that accommodate the restrictions. Employees with physical work restrictions can receive laptops and headsets to help the Customer Service team with satisfaction surveys.
Experienced technicians can also help with the CoolSys technician hotline. “The hotline is great because if a technician has a question in the field or needs guidance, they can call and receive directions from a senior CoolSys technician immediately. Utilizing their skillset, these employees are now fielding calls from their teammates across the nation, giving advice and guidance,” Zach says.
The Safety team has been working hard to execute these initiatives. They are a group of people passionate about safety and are ready to provide even better safety measures in 2023.