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The following article was written by our partners at Pinnacol Assurance.

Well-rested workers make safe workers. Unfortunately, Daylight Saving Time and a change in season often wreak havoc on your employees’ sleep patterns. The truth is, sleep deprivation is a problem in America every night. In the U.S., three in 10 working adults sleep six hours or less in a 24-hour period.

Exhaustion can spark problems on the job, such as difficulty concentrating, attention lapses, and decreased performance, which can lead to accidents.

Thirteen percent of all workplace incidents resulting in injury are tied to fatigue, according to the National Safety Council. Another study found fatigue-related productivity losses cost almost $2,000 per worker per year.

If your employees are dragging, can you do anything to get them back on track? Yes — try these six tips to encourage healthy sleep patterns and make your workplace safer:

1. Identify signs of fatigue
Have managers watch for recurring “micro-sleeps,” when people nod off as they work, and higher-than-usual consumption of caffeinated beverages, such as energy drinks. Talk to the employee about their sleep schedule to pinpoint the problem.

2. Schedule more strenuous or demanding work for the morning
Workers tend to be most alert before lunch.

3. Use fitness trackers or sleep tracking apps
These tell your employees not just how much sleep they get getting but also whether it’s good quality. Sponsor company-wide sleep challenges, aiming for eight hours a night, or make sleep quality tracking part of your wellness plan.

4. Adjust work schedules to accommodate rest
If your employees perform physically taxing tasks, allow them a bit of downtime to regroup. They will return energized and perhaps more efficient.

5. Advise employees on good sleep habits
Spread the word through company newsletters, blogs or social media about the importance of establishing a sleep routine and why to avoid electronics an hour before bedtime.

6. Make changes in lighting, temperature and other environmental factors
Workers’ surroundings can influence exhaustion. Turn up the lights or crank down the heat to keep them focused.

Questions? Contact Pinnacol at

Pinnacol Assurance assumes no responsibility for management or control of customer safety activities. Please ensure your business meets the requirements of all federal, state, and local laws, regulations, or ordinances related to workplace safety.

Learn more and get a quote today from our partners at Pinnacol Assurance.

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