Perhaps one of the most important steps facilities can make to ensure a color-coding plan is properly followed is to ensure you have proper color-coding plan signage in place. Here at R.S. Quality Products, we have over 25 years of experience in helping our clients - in all kinds of industries and for varying facilities - develop signage that works for them. We thought we’d share some the best practices for these color-coding signs as getting it right the first time can help to save you a lot of hassle and money in the long run.
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Keep It Simple
You want the sign to be able to be read an understood in a matter of seconds - not minutes. Overcomplicating the sign with too much copy or too many images can make it difficult to read and chances are, the more difficult it is to read, the fewer the amount of people who are going to read it.
Keep It Visual
Remember you need to get the point across quickly - relying on clear imagery versus a lot of text can help you to do this.
Use Easily-Recognizable Imagery
A common mistake is to go overboard on the imagery front. Don’t include imagery that isn’t familiar or requires more than just a quick glance to recognize.
As a best practice, be sure to use high contrasting colors so that those who are color-blind are more likely to be able to read your signs. People who are color-blind generally have difficulty distinguishing between reds, greens, browns and oranges. They also commonly confuse different types of blue and purple hues.
Consider Language Barriers
If your facility employs anyone who is a non-native English speaker, you should absolutely have versions of your signage in the language spoken by those employees. Be sure to work with your HR departments to stay abreast to any changes so that you can stay on top of ensuring signage that all employees can read.
Bigger Is Better
As a general rule, your signs and any copy on the signs should be big enough to be seen and read from five feet away.
Print On Appropriate Materials
If your signs are being placed in a wet wash environment, make them water proof. If they are going to be exposed to cleaning chemicals, print them on a chemical resistant material to ensure they hold up properly.
Place It Where It Will Be Seen
Think of placing these signs as you would placing your favorite piece of art in your home - you want it where the most people will easily see it. Think of your highest trafficked areas - that is where you’ll want to place these signs as the goal is for all employees to know what is expected of them.
Assess Your Signs Quarterly
Check in quarterly with employees at various levels and in various roles within the facility to see if the signs are still applicable and are communicating what they need to.