Social Innovation Stories


Safety on the job for temporary workers

The American Staffing Association (ASA) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) have joined forces to develop and execute a strategic plan to protect the health and safety of temporary workers in the U.S.A. In addition, ASA also designed the Safety Standard of Excellence program to foster continuous safety improvements across all industry sectors.

  • #Decent Work & Fighting Informality

  • #Working conditions

The challenge

Concerns are often raised regarding the health and safety conditions of agency workers; either because they are placed in jobs that may be hazardous or because they do not receive adequate training or explanations before starting the job, resulting in facing increased and unnecessary risks.


ASA is committed to protecting the rights, safety, and well-being of temporary workers – and educating staffing companies, their clients, and temporary workers about workers’ rights and employer’s responsibilities under the Occupational Safety and Health Act.

ASA entered a formal alliance to with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to:

  • Develop information to clarify the respective safety responsibilities of staffing firms and clients and their roles in improving the safety of temporary workers
  • Communicate such information to staffing firms, clients, and temporary workers
  • Share information among OSHA personnel and industry safety and health professionals regarding temporary worker safety best practices

ASA also developed the Safety Standard of Excellence program together the National Safety Council to provide safety best practices for staffing companies, as well as sample checklists and templates, online assessment tools, and other resources designed to continuously improve safety processes. Staffing companies that earn the ‘Safety Standard of Excellence’ mark demonstrate a holistic approach and deep commitment to ongoing safety improvements. Among the operational areas addressed by the program:

  • Selecting and screening applicants
  • Controlling workers’ compensation costs
  • Instituting general safety training and orientations
  • Evaluating work site hazards and employee exposure
  • Instituting collaborative incident management protocols.

Renewal assessments are required every two years to renew the use of the mark; following onsite assessments by the National Safety Council.

Key numbers


companies earning the ‘Safety Standard of Excellence’ mark


companies successfully renewing the mark


Safety best practices were developed for various industries and eleven Temporary Worker Initiative (TWI) OSHA Bulletins covering many different safety topics have been created for staffing firms to use in communications with user companies.

ASA regularly hosts webinars and workshops on industry-related risk management and safety management systems. ASA members are presenting at the National Congress of the National Safety Council.