The Safety Culture initiative that began in 2016 by CRH has proven to be successful for W-L Construction & Paving, Inc. in Chilhowie, VA. The Safety Culture Assessment was designed to measure the leading indicators of safety performance by providing a snapshot of the current safety culture through the lens of the cultural climate. The safety climate of the organization consists of employee perceptions regarding the expectations of management concerning safety performance. CRH conducted a baseline survey in May 2016 with a reassessment completed in May 2019 to measure improvements. The overall average for CRH from baseline to reassessment was 3% improvement. W-L Construction scored 9% improvement, ranking them the highest in improvement as well as the highest overall out of all 18 companies reassessed thus far.
After receiving the results of the initial survey in 2016, leadership developed and implemented several initiatives to improve the overall safety culture of the organization. Some of the most successful initiatives include:
- Hiring a full-time Safety Coordinator who is active and engaged in daily work with the crews in the field;
- Using Human Performance (HP) for effective Safety Management throughout our leadership. HP is the philosophy which understands that humans make mistakes. HP also helps identify the causes of these errors and provides the necessary tools for future incident reduction;
- Changing the safety incentive program from lagging indicators (paying for past safety performance) to rewarding employees for leading indicators such as conducting a toolbox talk or reporting near misses;
- Creating an Incident Review Committee to analyze all incidents throughout the year to provide consistency.
As a result, the implementation of these initiatives led to the improvement of the overall score for the company.
Although proud of the success of the organization, W-L Construction strives to ensure the safety culture continues to advance, employees are engaged and take ownership of their safety program.