Do Your Suppliers and Contractors Share Your Safety Culture?

Do Your Suppliers and Contractors Share Your Safety Culture?

01st September 2020

The factors underlying the health and safety practices in your workplace are an essential hazard control. Building a safety culture can be difficult and time-consuming, but a permissive attitude towards the safety practices of your suppliers and contractors can easily destroy it. If you’re looking for ways you can take an active role in the supplier/contractor’s safety culture but don’t know where to start, then you’ve come to the right place. Below are five efficient steps to help employers to evaluate and establish a successful supplier/contractor’s safety culture.


  1. Pre-Qualification

It’s important that you evaluate the safety record of your supplier or contractor before you even begin working with them. You should request safety statistics from your prospective suppliers and contractors; including:

  • Fatality rate

  • Total recordable incident rate (TRIR)

  • Experience modification rate (EMR)

  • Days away from work, restricted or transferred (DART) rate

Other considerations such as licenses, permits, and continuous improvement programs

This evaluation will help you determine whether a prospective supplier or contractor has a safety record and culture that makes them eligible to work with you. This way, you’ll avoid giving contracts to prospective suppliers and contractors with failing grades. For instance, are the products designed and manufactured to meet the relevant health and safety requirements? CE marked fabrications are an assurance the products are designed as per the EU health and safety directives.


  1. Pre-Job Task and Risk Assessment

Before commencing any project, ensure to perform a risk assessment to understand the extent of the risks involved in the work being performed. This should include the assessment of the task at hand and also that of your contractor’s proposed work procedures and safety programs. Higher-risk projects may demand extra requirements for in-depth risk assessment, safety-related requirements, and preparation of additional written programs. In situations where the general contractor decides to bring in other subcontractors, you’ll hold the general contractor responsible for enforcing the same safety standards requirements specified in the contract.


  1. Training and Orientation

On-site safety orientation before the start of the contract is necessary for all contract workers to ensure everything is available and in the right order. Contractors are also required to complete necessary training programs in site-specific hazards for elevated work, forklifts, hot work, electrical, confined space entry, and hazardous energy control. At no point should you allow a contractor to work on any project without first undergoing the relevant training. Remember, you’ll be liable for their safety while in your workplace.


  1. Job Monitoring

It’s vital to keep track of the project while ongoing to ensure everything is done safely and according to plan. Ensure to have a regular monitoring plan in place for your contractor. You can include daily or weekly checklists, walk-through inspections, pre-shift safety talks, and monthly or annual assessments. Other ways of monitoring your contractors is through procedures for them to report unsafe conditions and submit safety observations.


  1. Post-Job Evaluation

Do you have a post-job evaluation procedure in place? This is one of the least-utilized safety tools most employers assume to consider. Yes, the job may have been completed as per the schedule. But you’ll need to look at the quality of the finished project, customer service, and the safety factors. These factors will help you determine the contractors’ eligibility for future contracts. Therefore, if you have no post-job evaluation procedures in place, have a plan to include them in your culture.