As of today, EMIT is 283 days without a recordable. It’s something to be proud of, but by no means does it mean we have succeeded. It’s a milestone to our focus and determination on creating a safety culture and the key now is to keep the momentum going.
How did we get to this point?
- We revamped and implemented new policies and procedures making sure they were easily understandable. Policies and procedures are continually updated to meet the ever-changing demands of our industry and employee training is kept current.
- We do job related pre-employment testing to ensure that new hires are fully capable of performing the physical requirements of his/her job.
- New hires spend their first day in orientation and 70% of that day covers safety.
- A Behavior-Based Safety Program was implemented that includes all employees from senior management to front-line workers.
- We revamped our incident investigation process. It now includes multiple parties and Root Cause Analysis (RCA) methods. If gaps exist in our current prevention and control systems, we are quick to correct them and communicate with everyone what has changed.
- We requested a voluntary OSHA Consultation to help find potential hazards in our business and improve our safety and health management.
How do we keep the ball rolling?
- Stick with change. Change is hard, especially if past methods deemed unsafe were successful in accomplishing the tasks at hand. We must remember the reasoning behind change and trust that the goal is far greater than us individually.
- Employee engagement. We must continue to drive participation in our Behavior-Based Safety Program. Employee’s observations are invaluable in updating our current prevention and control systems.
- The small things. When it comes to safety, small things can become very large things in a matter of seconds. We must keep the focus on disciplining ourselves to take care of the small things to prevent the large things. It is everyone’s responsibility to prevent unsafe behaviors no matter how small or large.
- Free flow of information. Everyone communicates openly and candidly, both up, down and across the organization.
- Focus on complacency. Complacency affects anyone who’s environment and tasks don’t change from day-to-day. It’s especially hard to reduce redundancy in tasks for a manufacturing environment that focuses on quality and reduction in variation. Therefore, we must constantly challenge each other and ourselves in finding new techniques to diminish complacency.
I am honored to say we have 283 days without a recordable. However, I am more excited about the forward momentum that we have created. Our safety culture consists of shared beliefs, well founded practices, and positive attitudes that we all must continue to foster throughout the years.
ONE WAY TO KEEP MOMENTUM GOING IS TO HAVE CONSTANTLY GREATER GOALS. – Michael Korda
Amy Sweckard, Director of HR & Safety 5/2/2016