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Worthy Incentives for Safety Programs

Discussion in 'OHSAS - Occupational Health and Safety' started by Brian Vandolah, Aug 5, 2015.

  1. Brian Vandolah

    Brian Vandolah Member

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    Over the past few years I've read about some workplace safety incentives that (either intentionally or despite their best intentions) encourage the under-reporting of incidents and accidents and punish protected activities, such as whistle-blowing.

    Conversely, I've also seen those which otherwise promotes employee participation in various safety-oriented activities (like contests or lotteries that get their employees to identify hazards and take part in accident investigations).

    I'm just curious to see what anyone here at QFO who has safety experience (or a safety mindset) would offer up as good incentives that could have a real effect in the workplace....

    If you have a story or past experience to add, by all means share it o_O
     
  2. Claes Gefvenberg

    Claes Gefvenberg Moderator Staff Member

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    Well... We have put a lot of effort into safety for quite a number of years. As a result our risk and near misses reports have soared, while our accident rate has gone down significantly.

    Success factors? Not necessarily on this order, but:
    Our top management initiated this, and has imo generally walked the talk.
    Safety is not only on the agenda all the time. It is item no one.
    OHSAS 18001 registration has become a de facto customer requirement. Some of our customers simply will not deal with us without it.
    We already had a pretty solid safety management system in place, but OHSAS 18001 registration still helped a lot.
     
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  3. Jennifer Kirley

    Jennifer Kirley Moderator Staff Member

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    Since most people don't generally go to work with the wish to be harmed, putting safety programs in place can be rewarding in themselves if it means people go home with all the parts they came in to work with. Putting in place, and supporting these programs can help management communicate positive leadership qualities to personnel, and help improve the organization's culture.

    Those are "soft" rewards, but if you want to also offer tangible rewards it may help to correlate the number of near-miss or safety suggestions with lower injury and incident rates. My Safety Costs Calculator could help managers identify a cause-and-effect between improved safety and profits, assuming no other factors influence profits much in the same period.

    Since "Safety is everyone's business," some of the profit improvements could be returned to employees as bonuses or to fund an annual family event that all could enjoy. In this way we could hope to reward outcomes without overly influencing inputs like reporting.

    I hope this helps!
     

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  4. Ali.M

    Ali.M Member

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    There is a safety program called the Safety Cross. It works by colouring a box for each day of the month a specific colour:

    Green for no accidents,
    Amber for a near miss or first aid and,
    Red for Medical Treatment Incident.

    A monetary reward or a raffle for the workers for not having an amber or red over a period (e.g. a year) is a possible incentive.
     
  5. Andy Nichols

    Andy Nichols Moderator Staff Member

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    Hi Brian:

    OSHAS 18001 is obsolete and has been replaced by ISO 45001.
     
  6. Izzul Asyraf

    Izzul Asyraf New Member

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    Would not this resulting in less accident reporting.? I think all of worker would want to hide their incident / accident to able them to get a reward. You see, the point is we want each incident whether small or big to be reported.. Would care to share your implementation experience for us. Thank you. :)
     
  7. tony s

    tony s Well-Known Member

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    I don't think so. If an injured worker lost a finger due to an accident in the workplace, I don't think he/she would hide it to get a reward. Not reporting such an accident will deprive a worker of his/her right to compensation. Non-reporting of accidents will also violate regulatory requirements and will result to penalties.
     
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  8. RoxaneB

    RoxaneB Moderator Staff Member

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    I respectfully disagree based on Izzul's strategy for a reward - it includes amber which he would classify as a near miss or first aid. If someone ALMOST drives their forklift into a tall shelf of product, but manages to regain control and avoid the actual (and potentially harmful) incident, do you think he will report it IF it will remove him from the running of the reward? My own experience says no. As soon as we tie reward/punishment into the "almost" events, those "almost" events suddenly stop occurring (i.e., no one reports them).

    Near misses and first aids should NOT be tied into the reward or penalty system as we want them to reported in the hopes that we can take action that will mitigate the likelihood of the near miss evolving into an actual incident the next time around.

    That said, I disagree with the individual reward approach regarding having no medical treatment (although, I would change this to be no lost time accidents). Safety is NOT an individual activity. Okay, it is to a degree, but if your safety program involves team-based approaches to lock-out/tag-out, confined space, and simply looking out for one another, it should be a company reward/recognition. Everyone receives it. Or no one does.
     
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  9. Andy Nichols

    Andy Nichols Moderator Staff Member

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    ^^^^ What RoxaneB said:)
     
  10. tony s

    tony s Well-Known Member

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    Not everybody has the same experience. Not every near-miss can be ignored. Not every position is agreeable.
     
  11. RoxaneB

    RoxaneB Moderator Staff Member

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    I realize that. But putting a reward on ZERO ambers which Izzul wanted near-misses to fall into is a de-motivator for reporting.
     
  12. tony s

    tony s Well-Known Member

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    I agree.
    This is where I disagree.
     
  13. RoxaneB

    RoxaneB Moderator Staff Member

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    Is the disagreement on the use of the word "all"? If so, I agree. Extreme presumptions are subjective and laden with personal bias. However, the likelihood of near misses NOT being reported increases if they're tied into a reward based on 0 near misses (especially, if it is an individual reward).

    Reward and recognition, while different approaches, should have the common goal of trying to have desired behaviour repeated. If anything, near misses should have something in place for the highest number reported. Downside to this is the potential for excess paperwork/investigation as every little "hey, that shouldn't have happened, but thankfully no one was hurt" is reported.

    That said, I'd much rather see no reward/recognition tied into near misses...unless it's something associated with how a team addressed a near miss, by significantly reducing the risk and/or the recurrence likelihood associated with it.
     
  14. RoxaneB

    RoxaneB Moderator Staff Member

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    Of course, this whole discussion may be moot for the time being...

    Brian - the OP - was last seen April 2018
    Ali - May 2019
    Izzul - mid-November 2019
     

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