We get asked a lot to help “make us compliant with health and safety?”, however being compliant is only part of the health and safety journey, and the compliance line is always moving as a company grows.
A company should be asking “How do we improve our safety culture?”
Good health and safety is:
“People planning, doing or making decisions with risk in mind”
A H&S ‘good’ company has:
“Leaders that visibly promote health and safety and involve people”
Without a good health and safety culture, good health and safety is difficult to achieve. Health and safety culture should be lead from PCBU’s and management.
So how do we achieve good?
Planning, Acting, Monitoring, Reviewing, and Communicating.
Planning for the What If?
Health and safety is essentially planning for the “what could go wrong?” We plan to reduce the likelihood of something that could go wrong, and prepare actions for when it does go wrong with established emergency procedures and training.
Everyone within the organisation needs to recognise that Health and Safety ranks equally with responsibilities for production, services rendered and similar matters. A good health and safety culture needs all involved with the business to be actively engaged with improving and carrying out health and safety practices.
Management provides and ensures that there is appropriate financial, technological and human resources available to establish, implement, maintain and improve the OH&S Management System.
Understanding the context of the organisation; including external and internal challenges which influence and shape Health and Safety management requirements.
Management takes overall responsibility and accountability for the prevention of work-related injury and ill health.
Management ensures workers, contractors and visitors on their sites have a safe and healthy work environment.
Management ensures that both workers and contractors work in a healthy, safe manner and are not harmed or do not cause harm to others.
Demonstrate a commitment to establish measurable objectives and targets compatible with the strategic direction of the organisation. Use Lead and Lag indicators to assess progress of the OHSMS in the organisation.
Encourage worker consultation and participation in health and safety matters. This could be a health and safety committee, health and safety suggestion/ observation cards or a incentive scheme for meeting health and safety KPI’s.
Provide workers that are adequately trained to do the tasks they are required to do. Training could be provided internally or externally.
Promote measures to prevent injury and illness by insisting on safe methods, safe equipment, proper materials and safe practices at all times
Ensure accurate, timely reporting of incidents (near miss, injury and non-injury), investigation and ensure required corrective actions are implemented promtly.
12. Participate in an audit program to maintain excellence and actively promote a safety improvement plan to drive continual improvement and ensuring the promotion of Health and Safety standards.
Encourage workers to identify and report hazards; assess and control workplace risk and opportunities. Provide a procedure for reporting and closing out new hazards.
Design, construct, operate and maintain assets so that they safeguard people and property.
What is the level of risk for the activity or work?
The higher the risk is, the more involvement from the board / PCBU to the worker is required.
Think about the risk, are the risks “Reasonably Practicable”? or can risks be reasonably eliminated? Try to eliminate the risk, if that is not possible you need to manage the risk. Provide documentation of the objectives and goals.
Planning and Reviewing
This is an ongoing process that needs to be introduced at all levels, to cover all activities. An Annual Activity Planner covering the next twelve months needs to be established and utilised. This sets out what needs to be prioritised, who is responsible, what needs to be done and is the heart of managing hazards and risks. A review process system needs to be developed and implemented.
Monthly reporting of incidents and positives helps grow the company culture. It also is an indicator as to where safety improvements have been and can be made.
Communication is the blood of a business. If it is not pumping then it is not working. Communicate the actions, improvements and the wins of health and safety. Communicate within the business and also with other contractors you are working alongside to create a harmonious workspace.
Our team are available if you require assistance with your health and safety culture, planning and reporting.