Elaborating a risk prevention plan and performing safety audits based on smart and genuine checklists brings to your company a multi-stake benefit. It ranges from improved performance, well-being at work, better anticipation in mitigating safety risks, to harmonizing overall company’s policies and strongly contributing to a culture of enhanced collaboration.
Beside taking a step forward to anchoring better, safer and more productive working conditions, safety audits aim at measuring the compliance to regulatory safety codes and in-house risk prevention plans. Safety audits cover fire hazards, first aid capability, safety of people and facilities but they may cover as well cyber-attacks, fraud and any other risk specific to the company’s activity.
Safety audits are usually conducted on a regular basis in order to check actual compliance with risk prevention policies and collect data in order to improve those policies by better understanding the risks at stake.
In case of incidents a one-shot safety audit may be conducted as well in order to assess whether the occurrence is exceptional or that it may happen again in which case the risk prevention plan would need to be amended. The safety team would then perform a standard audit and complete it with a differential analysis in order to assess an possible gap.
One must first elaborate a safety audit plan according to regulatory codes and inhouse objectives.
It is recommended to build an internal safety audit team who will conduct safety audits on a regular basis (e.g. semiannually or quarterly) according to the activities to be audited. The team members should be originated from various departments of the company in order to engage a culture of risk prevention throughout the organization. They will be obviously trained in order to gain the proper skills to perform an audit and identify hazards and also acquire acquaintance to safety standards and legal frameworks.
In order to ensure neutrality and also benefit from a fresh set of eyes, the audit of a department will be conducted by two people who do not work with or in that department. The team will be supervised by the company’s general management and coordinated by safety specialists.
The safety audit plan should then be declined into specific and explicit checklists that the team can follow autonomously.
While carrying out the safety audit one should pay attention to collecting evidence as well, such as pictures, testimonies, etc. These evidences may be used to prove compliance with the safety audit plan but also as a working material to improve mitigating solutions to prevent actual and further risks.
An audit report may need to be edited and an action plan recommended in order to improve the set up of some policies.
When conducting a safety audit, one usually carries paper checklists, takes pictures on cameras or smartphones and right down testimonies. With open SAAS solutions implemented on PC tablets one can very easily focus on the checklist at hand, take pictures that will be directly stored in relation to the safety checklist item and record testimonies with the same device.
No time spent on reorganizing data nor retyping information. Benchmarks can be automatically generated and a follow up of the results monitored over time. Corrective recommendations are never missed and can be easily ticked while filing in with the proper piece of evidence.
Besides, a variety of safety audit checklists may be provided with the solution and further customized to meet specific requirements. These checklists usually describe the risk at stake, types of hazards that may occur, mitigants whether material of process, and KPIs in order to monitor timely evolution of actual situation.
Scoring is also an interesting feature of these solutions. Especially when it comes to benchmarking. A multisite company may need to assess its safety policies through several items and compare or benchmark throughout its premises.
Moreover, with such solutions, one may ensure alignment of safety audits with monthly or weekly inspections made by team supervisors and facility managers. Some safety audits can also be delegated to people outside the audit team as safety audit checklists may, in some cases, be very intuitive thanks to the tablet application.
The solution is also a fantastic training tool for the new members of the audit teams any manager willing to better anticipate and implement risk prevention policies.
Ready for your safety audit ?