How to Evaluate a Candidate’s Safety Record


Three out of every 100 American employees will report a workplace illness or injury each year (Source: OSHA). So, it should be easy to see the importance of hiring with safety in mind. Any potential employee should have the right attitude about workplace safety. But how do you evaluate a candidate’s safety record?

Interview Questions That Evaluate Safety

Experience is a good indicator of how safety-conscious a candidate may be. Situational or behavioral interview questions can be good tools when evaluating a job candidate. Here are a few sample questions to ask, depending on the position or industry:

  • Relate a time when you witnessed a co-worker engaging in unsafe work practices. What was the situation, and how did you react?
  • What would you do if a superior asked you to do something which breaks safety protocols?
  • Have you had any specialized safety training? How did you and your team benefit?

Industrial settings are naturally more dangerous than office settings, so more detailed questions may also be needed. You may ask the candidate to outline safety protocols for the position, to assess their current knowledge level.

Background Checks

Should you include workers’ comp history when completing candidate background checks? It is a tricky, and potentially risky, thing to do. State laws vary, and if a workers’ comp claim ended in permanent disability, you could wind up breaking ADA regulations. Unless you are aware of the legal requirements, it may not be worthwhile to take your investigation that far. If you have concerns about a candidate, spending extra time discussing safety during the interview may be a better choice.

Another great option is to ask about safety during the reference check stage of hiring. Ask the former manager of the candidate what their attitude toward safety was, or if they had any disciplinary actions due to neglecting safety protocol.

Staffing Partners works hard for our clients to provide the best candidates for every position. This includes a strict screening process, reference checks and a strong emphasis on workplace safety. Working with our team of experienced staffing professionals can help you create a team of professional, safety-conscious workers. Contact us today to get started.

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