The Difference Between Safe and Unsafe Business Practices

Thompson Innovation Safe Business Practices Security and PPE

Injury prevention is mission critical in the workplace. Safe practices reduce risk and ultimately lead to increased profits, employee efficiency, and overall better employee morale. A safe employee is a happy employee who goes home at the end of their work day.  To begin educating your team on workplace safety it is helpful to contrast unsafe and safe behaviors. Below is a list of some areas to consider carefully.

Unsafe Behaviors:

  1. Not wearing the proper Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) when dealing with electrical hazards or around fire systems. This can lead to serious injury and violations of OSHA regulations.
  2. Not properly training your employees for when they have to deal with workplace hazards.
  3. Not having a routine inspection of maintenance equipment to make sure it is clean and running smoothly without any problems.
  4. Allowing work areas to become cluttered and unmaintained.
  5. Not keeping your facility secure with video surveillance, fire monitoring or access control.

Safe Behaviors:

  1. Stay up-to-date with the latest OSHA and NPFA 70E requirements. This allows you to know the safe procedures that come with certain jobs.
  2. Have your fire systems inspected to ensure their working conditions? These are important as they can detect heat, smoke, and carbon monoxide.
  3. Have your Arc Flash Risk Assessment completed in order to ensure that your electrical equipment is properly checked and inspected and so you know which PPE to wear.
  4. Designation a proper place for tools, equipment and schedule regular times to clean work areas and walk ways.
  5. Always report anything you see that could lead to a hazard or lead to an unsafe situation. Sometimes hazards can go unnoticed. Speak up!

Keep safety a priority! It is a best practice for many reasons. Be thorough with your inspections and training and quick to respond when a problem is identified. For additional help or information on ways you can improve safety contact the experts at Thompson Innovation. Our information is:

Phone: 866-258-8462

Email: help@thompsoninnovation.com

Website:  thompsoninnovation.com

 

Four Steps to Build an Innovative Platform for your Business

TI_Logo-FINAL-01Thinking outside the box tends to be the best way to have that big breakthrough. Many ideas that you have could fail to take off, not because of bad ideas but simply because innovation depends on the success of the product just as much as the idea itself. This is why having an effective innovation platform will help you along the way. We have 4 steps that can assist you in your ventures.

Step 1. Understand why you should innovate. Markets in this economy are always changing so it is very important that you stay up-to-date with the latest trends. There are different types of innovation that you can apply to your business, these include: product innovation, process innovation, marketing innovation, and organizational innovation. These types of innovation can help you find your “why”.

 Step 2. Acknowledge ideas from any place. Whether its customer feedback, employees, partners, or the executive team, anyone can help give you that great idea. This means that you might have to monitor your customer service lines to hear feedback. Maybe you have a suggestion box in the office to hear from your employees. Host fun and friendly competitions with rewards around the office to boost and motivate your workers to be creative. All of these can generate the opportunity for an idea to be born.

Step 3. Hire or train new employees in different areas. If you see a gap in you company between growth and capability then it might be time to look outside for help or look to the veterans for their experience. Hiring outside help, even if it is a short-term contractor, can bring in a new perspective that your employees can learn and adopt. Look to your veterans who might not have previously voiced their opinion but can give you beneficial information on what they think would be better for the company. Sometimes people are too shy about speaking their mind, so you should ask. Who knows maybe the next big idea is sitting in your own building.

Step 4. Choose your processes and tools wisely. There are a couple different ways to go about doing this. Some of the processes are, closed innovation which is doing things all in-house. Collaborative innovation is working with your closest partners. Open innovation is being open to customer feedback and ideas. Lastly, a co-innovator is partnering with another business to develop something that you couldn’t do on your own. The tools are the structure and the methods you use to implement these strategies. Any type of innovation can involve risk but having a plan in place can make the process a lot smoother.

Thompson Innovation is here to help make your business more innovative. Contact us to learn more about ways to kickstart innovation and improve your operations.

Phone: 712-224-3800

Website: www.Thompsoninnovation.net

Exciting Announcement

Featured

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On May 22, 2018, Electric Innovations and its sister company Thompson Automation and Specialty Services were brought together as a stronger and even more dynamic technology integration company called Thompson Innovation.

Our strategic plan has always been focused on strengthening the technical capabilities and portfolio of solutions we can offer to our customers. This is another step in fulfilling our Corporate Mission: “To be the prime solution provider as recognized by our employees, customers and the communities we serve.”

Under the direction of General Managers, Tasha Barker and Jason Glover, Thompson Innovation will continue to passionately lead our solutions teams in:

  • Managed IT & Software
  • Life Safety & Security
  • Automation & Robotics
  • Electrical Safety & Preventative Maintenance

The addition of solutions previously provided by Thompson Automation and Specialty Services strengthens our ability to meet current and new customer’s needs as one company. For more information contact Thompson Innovation at 712-224-3800 or visit us at www.thompsoninnovation.net

Keep Your Electrical Gear Clean and Tight

Electrical failures often can be avoided, and good preventative maintenance programs can help predict the imminent failure of equipment.  According to the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), the failure rate of electrical equipment is three times higher when electrical preventive maintenance programs are not performed. This tells us that electrical failures can be avoided.

What should be included in an excellent electrical preventative maintenance program (EPM)? There are so many things that could be done such as: Equipment maintenance, cleaning, and thermal imaging.  However, where does one put the priority?  You have to consider the top causes of failure in electrical systems and these include: loose connections, improperly installed parts, defective/inadequate insulation, foreign objects causing short-circuiting, overloading inadequate capacity, and the accumulation of dust, dirt, and oil.  All things that can be prevented with routine and systemic electrical inspections.

Common in all these causes of electrical equipment failure is gear not being clean and well maintained.  Here are four things to keep in mind when developing an EPM program.

First, keep your gear clean. The buildup of dirt and metal debris in an electrical enclosure can cause arcing and arc flash explosions.  A second issue brought about by the accumulation of dirt and debris is an increase in heat and the temperature of the electrical equipment. Third, restricted airflow and an increase in the temperature of gear grossgearthompsondecreases the quality and usable life of the equipment.  Finally, a dirty environment also creates a hospitable home for rodents and vermin. We aren’t kidding, we really have found rodents in electrical gear. Dust is not your only enemy in dirty environments, so keep it clean.

Keep your gear tight. Loose connections are a major cause of electrical failures. More than 75% of the problems uncovered during routine thermal imaging inspections are loose connections. Thermography (infrared scanning) is a common way to identify areas that need repair but must be done while the gear is energized.  While the gear is off and being cleaned why not take an extra minute to check and tighten those loose connections?

If you have more questions or are looking for ideas and more information on best practice electrical preventative maintenance programs give the experts at Thompson Automation and Specialty Services a call today. They are ready and willing to help out in any way that they can.

Phone: 844.321.3869

Website: www.thompsonspecialty.com

Email: help@thompsonspecialty.com

OSHA’s Most Cited Violation in 2017 was TRAINING

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Given the nearly 5,000 recorded OSHA violations in 2017 related to Training it’s time to look at your companies training programs and make sure you are covered and not in violation of an OSHA rule.  Not only are nearly one-fifth of all OSHA violations in 2017 related to training, the #9 reason for citations alone was improper training related to fall protection.  OSHA is sending a very clear message to all employers; train your employees!

If you are wondering what to do then, the first place to start is with education and an understanding of what OSHA is asking you to do.  OSHA requires explicitly that the employer must train employees in the safety and health aspects of their job.  One place to find this information is in the Training Requirements in OSHA Standards, a 270-page book that provides a general overview of training standards, requirements, and related topics.  The book is to assist employers, safety and health professionals, and training directors with what they need to know regarding OSHA’s training-related requirements. You could also just start by looking at the list of most cited violations.

Ask yourself: Do your employees handle or work around dangerous chemicals?  Are we properly locking out when we work on electrical gear?  Have we conducted the proper electrical safety training or taught our employees on the proper use of fall safety equipment?  If the answer is ‘Yes’ and you are not conducting training – you better start.

As a nationally recognized leader of electrical safety and electrical preventative maintenance testing, Thompson Automation and Specialty Services is also a leader in electrical safety, preventative maintenance and technical training.  Thompson Training offers more than 60 specific courses in the areas of electrical safety and electrical preventative maintenance.  This breadth of courses provides us the opportunity to design a unique curriculum for your staff’s specific needs.  Whether the course is Electrical Safety for Non-Electrical Personnel, OSHA 30, or training on the most recent NFPA 70E 2018 updates; our expert trainers will connect with your team to deliver an impactful training session that increases your teams’ knowledge. Start 2018 off with a customized safety training plan.

SAFETY

Electrical Safety-Related Work Practices – Provide training to high-risk workers and management on OSHA requirements and the prevention of serious injuries from electrical hazards on the worksite. (OSHA Sub part S – Electrical)

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for Electrical Safety – Selecting, using and care of PPE used for arc flash and shock protection.

OSHA 30 – 30 hours of Regulations training over a minimum of 4 days, Introduction to OSHA, OSHA inspections, OSHA’s focus Four, (Falls, Struck By, Caught in-between, Electrocution), Confines Spaces, Ladders and Stairs, Scaffolding, Cranes, PPE, Excavations, tools, etc. (Training can be tailored to focus specific business hazards)

PREVENTIVE MAINTENANCE

Electrical Preventative Maintenance Training – Infrared testing, good housekeeping practices, early failure indicators.

Troubleshooting Fundamentals – What to look for when troubleshooting electrical hazards, questions to ask.

TECHNICAL

Electrical Fundamentals – How electricity works, electrical applications, differences between the power at your house and your business.

NFPA 70E – Latest NFPA changes and how they affect your employees, NFPA & OSHA relationship

NEC® National Electrical Code Training – The latest changes to the National Electrical code and what those changes mean to your business.

If you want additional information don’t hesitate to contact us. Our phone number is 712-224-3873 and our website is www.thompsonspecialty.com. Again, thank you for attending and we hope to hear from you soon!

Jason Glover
General Manager

Keep Your Electrical Gear Clean and Tight

Electrical failures often can be avoided and good preventative maintenance programs can help predict the imminent failure of equipment.  According to the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), the failure rate of electrical equipment is three times higher when electrical preventive maintenance programs are not performed. This tells us that electrical failures can be avoided.

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But what should be included in a good electrical preventative maintenance program (EPM). There are so many things that could be done.  Equipment maintenance, cleaning, and thermal imaging are just a few of the things to be considered.  However, where does one put the priority?  Just consider the top causes of failure in electrical system: loose connections, improperly installed parts, defective/inadequate insulation, foreign objects causing short-circuiting, overloading inadequate capacity, and the accumulation of dust, dirt and oil.  All things that can be prevented with routine and systemic electrical inspections.

Common in all these causes of electrical equipment failure is gear not being clean and well maintained.  Here are things to keep in mind when developing an EPM.

  1. Keep your gear clean. The buildup of dirt and metal debris in an electrical enclosure can cause arcing and arc flash explosions. A second issue brought about by the buildup of dirt and debris is an increase in heat and the temperature of the electrical equipment.  Restricted airflow and an increase in the temperature of gear decreases the quality and usable life of the equipment.  Finally, a dirty environment also creates a hospitable home for rodents and vermin. Dust is not your only enemy in dirty environments and lurking to cause problems.
  2. Keep your gear tight. Loose connections are a major cause of electrical failures. Greater than 75% of the problems uncovered during routine thermal imaging inspections are loose connections. Thermography (infrared scanning) is a common way to identify areas that need repair but must be done while the gear is energized. While the gear is off and being cleaned why not take an extra minute to check and tighten those loose connections.

If you have more questions or are looking for ideas and more information on best practice electrical preventative maintenance programs give the experts at Thompson Automation and Specialty Services a call today.  Given their 85+ years of experience as an electrical contractor, Thompson specializes in the development of custom electrical preventative maintenance programs for customers across the country.  Thompson understands the importance of keeping facilities safe, efficient and operating at peak performance and can custom tailor a program for you.

www.thompsonspecialty.com

You Need an Electrical Preventative Maintenance Program

2014-08-20 10.27.22Electrical systems, just like mechanical systems, are prone to failure over time due to age, poor maintenance, and the stress of overuse.  People often assume that because electrical systems lack moving parts there is not a need for electrical preventative maintenance.  An idea that couldn’t be further from the truth.  In fact, the resulting impacts of electrical failures can lead to larger and more costly problems than mechanical failures alone.  Here are four things to consider if you don’t think an electrical preventive maintenance program is for you.

  1. Safety: What is the safety of your employees and contractors worth?
  2. Electrical failures often can be avoided.

  3. Electrical preventative maintenance programs are not expenses, rather good investments.

  4. Industry standard best practice guidelines include preventive maintenance programs.

Earlier detection of problems can allow you to catch small issues before they become big ones.  No one can claim to be perfect at identifying electrical problems before they arise.  A good preventative maintenance program, however, can help predict the imminent failure of equipment.   The question then when deciding on the value of a preventative maintenance program is not the cost of the program but rather the return on the investment.

If you have more questions or are looking for ideas and more information on best practice electrical preventative maintenance programs give the experts at Thompson Automation and Specialty Services a call today.  Given their 85+ years of experience as an electrical contractor, Thompson specializes in the development of custom electrical preventative maintenance programs for customers across the country.  Thompson understands the importance of keeping facilities safe, efficient and operating at peak performance and can custom tailor a program for you.