James Rolt reflects on a successful year for the SHEQ Committee

Since it was revamped in April, the SHEQ committee has met on three occasions in 2017. In this time, we have had a lot of valuable feedback from employees, who are keen to have their say and be included in our drive for continuous improvement.

The overall aim of the committee is to improve communication, to encourage involvement of the workforce in developing working practices, highlighting procedural fails and, most importantly, providing suggestions for procedural improvement.

At each of the meetings, it is expected members will be given tasks to carry out and communicate with their colleagues in the wider workforce. Everyone, from the most senior managers to individual employees, has a part to play in building a strong culture, ensuring co-operation and joint problem solving.

The committee receives reports summarising all site audits carried out by the SHEQ department, monitoring the company’s average score and whether we are performing to our target. Our audit reports highlight areas of good practice as well as those for improvement. The top 10 trends identified are produced at every meeting for discussion and feedback.

Some examples of recent discussion points and queries include:

  • Whether an alternative specification of hard hat and safety eyewear could be issued to prevent general overheating, dehydration and glasses steaming up. Sample glasses were supplied to the committee for inspection.
  • It was asked how the company keeps records of hand arm vibration exposure. We were able to clarify the process for monitoring exposure as well as the occupational health service we provide to our employees.
  • We had a query regarding the company’s standard for hired vehicles – would it be possible to hire vehicles with racking in place or do we have temporary racking that can be fitted.
  • A recent question was raised enquiring if we could get more portable signage to display company information on smaller sites.

These types of questions, which are based on a sense of personal responsibility, send us a clear message that our colleagues have pride in themselves and our company.

We have nine committee members with all departments having representation. We work to a strict agenda covering safety, health, environmental and quality performance. This covers audit results, ISO status, accident and incident statistics and trends, legal and regulatory updates, policy and procedural updates and employee training.

These meetings take place quarterly and detailed minutes are circulated-ensuring the full workforce is kept up-to-date with current performance and initiatives. We are encouraging all employees to get involved, request to come along to a SHEQ committee meeting or have a question raised on their behalf.

Our next committee meeting is in January and I would like to thank the many colleagues who have embraced our initiatives and are keen to have their say and to be included.