School transportation managers deal with several risk management issues on a daily basis. What areas of risk-management training should be required of these managers? Dr. Sheri Randall, a human resources consultant in San Diego, offers the following:
• Company policies. A good start is the employee handbook, but managers should be familiar with all policies, postings and reporting responsibilities.
• Pre-employment interviewing. Privacy and discrimination issues come into play during the interview process. Managers need to know which questions they can ask and which they can’t.
• Employee safety. Managers should be aware of physical hazards in the immediate work environment. They should also be familiar with the district or company’s injury prevention plan.
• Sexual harassment. This area can be a land mine waiting for detonation if managers are not well versed in ways to identify and handle sexual harassment, particularly more subtle forms and “hostile workplace” issues.
• Discrimination. Managers should receive an overview of protected classes of employees and applicants. They should also be familiarized with the Americans with Disabilities Act.
• Responsible use of technology. Use of the Internet, e-mail and voice-mail is becoming increasingly common these days at school bus operations. Managers should receive training in proper use, including etiquette, of these handy, but often misused technologies.
Contact: Dr. Sheri Randall can be reached at the following e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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