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Research and Digital Services to Boost Workplace Safety

New research projects are underway to help working people overcome language barriers while accessing safety information and preventing employee burnout. The Centre for Work Health and Safety has partnered with digital innovators as part of a new program exploring how app-based interventions can reduce harm in workplaces.

The Head of SafeWork NSW stated that while there are many variables on worksites across NSW, most workers will have access to some form of technology, whether on a phone, a notebook computer, or other devices. She noted that this public-private partnership combines science, technology and evidence in a bid to deliver better outcomes for employees and businesses. The Centre is working with these two New South Wales-based businesses to leverage their ground-breaking safety ideas with a focus on practical solutions.

One app was a recipient of a SafeWork Award 2021, which allows workers from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds to access important safety information in their preferred language. The tech company’s Managing Director stated that the business is pleased to be working with the NSW Government and understands the workforce is culturally diverse.

The company recognises bringing working people together from all walks of life requires an unparalleled level of communication. They understand workplace safety depends on people and businesses having quality communication methods that are easy to understand. Their service delivers digital multilingual checklists, safety guidance and more via visual, voice and audio technologies.

The partnership will ensure that this tech firm’s app meets standards for culturally diverse employees while identifying ways to enhance the product with an underlying evidence base.  The research will also aim to boost the mental health and well-being of working people.

The Centre has partnered with another tech firm. The company has created an online well-being app that employs a mixture of psychology and artificial intelligence (AI) to deliver personalised nudges to workers to catch the precursors to burnout before it appears.

The Founder and CEO of this tech firm stated that the use of smart technologies like natural language processing and sentiment analysis can help employers detect and prevent burnout in teams. The company aims to create workplaces where both employees and employers have the right insights and tools to be healthier, happier and more productive at work.

The app features an animated AI assistant that delivers stress management tips, or ‘nudges’, to workers in real-time as needed.

The Director Centre for Work Health and Safety stated that the Centre for Work Health and Safety is working with diverse stakeholders to develop quality solutions to work health and safety problems. She noted that there are so many untapped ideas to solve common WHS issues just sitting in the minds of people who are on the frontline. The aim is to work with those people to create safer workplaces.

The global workplace safety market is expected to grow from an estimated US$14.2 billion in 2022 to US$26.7 billion by 2027 at a CAGR of 13.5% during the forecast period. This growth can be attributed to the rise in workplace accidents and injuries across a variety of workplaces in different regions.

There is a growing demand for workplace safety solutions across verticals including energy and utilities, construction and engineering, chemicals and materials, government and defence, healthcare and more.

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