It happens to the best of us. One negative safety incident can quickly snowball into the one metric that your site is measured by. It isn’t fair, but it is human nature. The bad reputation can harm the perception of the site by the personnel who work at the site every day, the project owner, or even the general public.

Some examples of safety incidents that can quickly sour your site’s reputation:

  • An OSHA inspection related to an employee complaint.
  • A severe injury experienced by one or multiple workers on the jobsite.
  • Poor decision-making that places production ahead of safety.
  • An inappropriate message conveyed at a safety meeting or training that contradicts the true safety goals of the site.

The quickest way to turn around a bad reputation is to put out positive energy. This article isn’t about the woo-woo types of positive energy, but identifying the actions that will have the most impact in turning the perception of the site around.

Modern safety culture is rooted in proactive activities. This means that attention is placed on safety before an incident occurs. Actions that are conducted after an incident are considered reactive, and often have a negative connotation.

When you’re facing a bad reputation, here are some positive steps you can take to ensure site personnel, site stakeholders, and the general public hold the site in high regard again.

Identify problems before someone else does
A mobile inspection app can help site personnel identify unsafe conditions and behaviors quickly. The Haz-Trac app allows any worker on the jobsite, of any level, to bring safety concerns to immediate attention. Often, the worker who identifies the problem may be able to solve it on their own or quickly identify a person who can fix the problem. The problems are identified, solved, and documented in one easy step via the app.

Set goals
Involve site leadership and workers of all levels to identify SMART goals to get the site back on the right track for safety. SMART is an acronym to ensure that goals are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-bound. The Haz-Trac app can support SMART goal progress by measuring frequency and severity of site observations in a given time period and identify locations of the job with high hazard observations. This real-time data allows site management to make course corrections towards the site goals.

Celebrate interim success
As the site conducts proactive and positive activities to achieve the established SMART goals, make sure to celebrate the progress! Haz-Trac has a Safety Leader option that allows personnel using the app to nominate other site personnel as Safety Leaders.

Recognition is a great way to keep the positivity going. Sites that have successfully implemented Haz-Trac have enjoyed frequent safety reward luncheons in which site personnel celebrate their safety record and recognize Safety Leaders.

Keep going
Once SMART goals have been established, it is important to keep moving forward by tracking progress and making changes as needed. The simple Plan-Do-Check-Act model can be implemented at any site working on their reputation.

Plan: This is the goal-setting phase. Engage as many levels of site workers as possible, from project management to craft workers.

Do: This is the phase in which the proactive safety activities are carried out in the field. Workers conduct site inspection using the Haz-Trac app, training is conducted related to hazards identified, hazards are resolved, and other daily safety activities are done.

Check: Site management reviews data analysis from the Haz-Trac app to identify areas of the jobsite receiving high hazard observations. Progress towards the established SMART goals is evaluated at this time as well.

Act: Based on the findings during the “Check” phase, specific actions are identified to keep the site on track toward achieving their established SMART goals.

Turning it around
With positive actions conducted, interim outcomes evaluated, and course corrections made – a site with a negative safety incident can ensure their reputation improves. The steps discussed in this post can be as simple as you’d like, but simple isn’t easy. Leveraging technology like the Haz-Trac app can ensure the process is intuitive and simple, ensuring consistent engagement from all levels of workers at the site toward the end goal – a great reputation.