Simplifying Health And Safety Signage

Rexel Signmaker

Identifying and highlighting health and safety hazards is a legal requirement for every business and signage is an effective way of warning employees of the possible dangers they may be exposed to.

Who is responsible for health and safety?

Those responsible for assessing health and safety signage requirements within an organisation are typically office and facilities managers or compliance and health and safety managers, however business owners often take on this role within smaller SMEs. Regardless, all decision makers within an organisation should be aware of the importance of and legislation surrounding health and safety signage.

Effectively communicating heath and safety hazards

Signs are used in the workplace to identify prohibited actions, show safeguards that must be followed, warn of hazards and direct towards special equipment or emergency exits. Following the European Union’s (EU) Directive in 2013, standardised health and safety signage was introduced across Europe to ensure that signs would convey the same message wherever witnessed. Within this directive is the ISO 7010 that directs the colour, shape and graphical symbol required on each sign to ensure they are all uniform.

Fire Exit Sign

As well as the EU’s standardisation directive, employers must follow a series of guidelines from the Health and Safety Executive on how best to display signage in the workplace. Firstly, they must be large and visible enough to understand. When warning of hazards associated with a piece of equipment, the sign must clearly point to the location of that equipment. As well as this, all signs should be permanent fixtures unless the hazard or workplace is temporary. The number of signs in one area should be kept to a minimum to reduce the risk of confusion and prevent avoidable incidents.

A flexible and cost effective signage solution

A commonly shared pain point for businesses is the flexibility and availability of a sign solution. With constant updates to health and safety legislation to reflect changes in the global environment, workplaces are often legally obligated to reproduce the same signage, ensuring that it adheres to current regulations. At Rexel, we recognise that businesses require a smart solution that allows them to make any necessary changes to signage without incurring significant costs. This is why we’ve developed the SignMaker, providing users with this much needed flexibility without the need to order pre-made signs.

Customers can benefit from significant cost reductions using the SignMaker. Research from Rexel shows that the cost of producing health and safety signage using a SignMaker is in fact 50% less than purchasing off the shelf signage**. In a typical business the up-front cost of a SignMaker will be recouped in as little as 18 months, meaning that outsourcing health and safety signage requirements really is much more expensive in the long term. And it goes without saying that the investment in a SignMaker would be minimal compared to the reputational damage and financial implications a company could face if found to not provide correct or timely signage, leading to an accident occurring in the workplace.

Rexel Signmaker is easy to use

Design high quality signs in minutes

As a powerful all-in-one solution, the SignMaker machine is supported by a comprehensive website available at The site offers innovative online functionality and provides the necessary tools to design high quality and functional signage within minutes. SignMaker’s comprehensive online library offers universal signage templates as directed by the ISO 7010 with workplace hazard categories including emergency/ escape signs, mandatory signs, prohibition signs, warning signs and hand signals. Within each category, there are a number of variations for each sign to suit the individual hazard. For example, users will find options for emergency exit signs that point left, right, up or down.

The easy to navigate online library enables users to quickly search for and select their desired sign online, customise and resize (from A5 up to A3) to meet their individual requirements and then download the end product. Simply print the design on the office printer, insert it into a cover, run it through the SignMaker and you have a finished, professional sign. It is also possible to upload an image or logo, enabling the creation of truly customised and branded signage.

No Smoking SignA wide selection of Rexel sign covers are available, ranging from standard gloss, matt, self adhesive and even hanging sign covers to protect signs from external wear and damage. The SignMaker’s built in trimmer and corner rounding tools mean each sign can be trimmed and finished in a matter of minutes. After use, customers will be pleased to find that the machine’s compact design means SignMaker is easy to store and does not take up valuable office space.

From sign selection to finishing, the complete process is fast and efficient, thanks to SignMaker’s combined sign creation and design capabilities. It is a significant reduction in the usual time it takes to specify, order and wait for the delivery of outsourced signs. SignMaker removes the complications, leaving the process of obtaining and displaying health and safety warning signs in the workplace simple and fast.

This low cost and timely signage production system is a useful addition to any workplace, helping to ease the problems associated with obtaining the correct and up to date workplace health and safety signage at the moment you need them.

Rexel’s SignMaker: any sign, any time…Half the cost.

Rexel SignMaker Market Research August 2015
**Based on an annual purchase of 20 pre-made signs at a cost of £359.40 over 3 years, compared to SignMaker’s 3 year cost of £180.72 over the same period

Article text provided by Rexel

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Sarah Jubb

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