As a business owner, department manager, or team leader, it’s important to keep your valuable assets, employees and office equipment, out of harm’s way. Accidents happen, but most can be prevented by taking the necessary safety precautions. There are certain situations that employees may encounter that require a little more than just common sense.
- Place electronic office equipment at a safe distance from the wall to prevent overheating, which can cause paper jams, poor quality prints, and reduces the longevity of the equipment
- Keep walkways clear of electrical cords/cables; besides being a tripping hazard, a sudden jerk to the cords/cables could damage them
- Have broken, frayed, damaged, or cords/cables with melted insulation repaired or replaced immediately
- Untie cords/cables that are tied in knots and check for any damage
- Use power strips with 3-pronged plugs where ever possible to ensure grounding and prevent overloading electrical outlets or extension cords
- Check the amp requirements of the electronic office equipment and amp capacity of the outlet before plugging it in
- Discontinue the use of and contact your office manager if equipment is damaged in anyway; further use could cause additional damage leading to added repair costs
- Avoid using space heaters near office equipment; the heater could cause the equipment to overheat or melt the plastic
- Do not eat or drink around electronic office equipment; food particles could get lodged and cause moving parts to jam (read Why Clean Your Dirty Keyboard & How to Properly Do So) or you could risk severe electrical shock
- Electronic office equipment should not be positioned next to exterior windows for two reasons: to prevent sun damage or overheating and to prevent water damage if the windows leak
- Reference the owner’s manual to find out the electronic equipment’s required room temperatures and/or humidity levels to ensure optimum productivity
- Ask for assistance, or request a training session from the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) if employees are unsure how to use the office equipment
- Reference the owner’s manual before loading paper, changing toner, or clearing a jam in the printer to avoid causing an unnecessary malfunction and subsequent service call
- Moving electronic office equipment should be left to the IT staff or OEM (read The Do’s and Don’ts of Moving Office Equipment)
- Know what types of materials the paper shredder can and cannot accept; some models shred cd’s, credit cards, staples, and paperclips and others don’t; always use caution when removing a jam
Play it safe! It’s important that employees and office equipment end-users are made aware of possible hazards and have the knowledge to handle different situations should one arise. Always consult the owner’s manual if you have any questions or concerns or contact the OEM directly. Most OEM’s will have a website and/or customer support page as well.
Please share this information with management and your fellow co-workers. Did I miss anything? Please feel free to leave a comment.