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Global best practices

in contractor safety
IOSH/ASSE good practice guidelines

www.iosh.co.uk/globalbest Information guide

IOSH publishes a two-tier Global best practice in contractor These guidelines represent the
safety – IOSH/ASSE good practice combined global experience of many
range of free technical guidelines senior health and safety advisers,
guidance. Our guidance This document is aimed at anyone who brought together at a joint IOSH/ASSE
needs to ensure good and continuously seminar in October 2000. There are
literature is designed to improving health and safety performance sections covering:
support and inform members in contracting organisations worldwide. - client and contractor practices,
It summarises current good practice culture and contract arrangements
and motivate and influence standards which apply to: that lead to good health and safety
health and safety stakeholders. - all contract situations, both project- performance
related and for ongoing work - issues and their solutions in
Direct info - all economic situations, in developed economies
Brief, focused information on health developed and developing countries - issues and their solutions in
and safety topics, typically operation- - clients and contractors. developing economies
or sector-specific. - issues and their solutions in
We encourage all IOSH and ASSE international contracts.
members to implement the good
practices described in this document. The guidelines are intended for use by
Strategic corporate guidance on health
We also welcome suggestions for all those with a stake in workplace
and safety issues.
improvements to these guidelines, contractor health and safety
based on wider experiences from performance.
clients and contractors. We’ll update
the guidelines as appropriate. February 2010

1 Introduction 02
2 What is good practice contractor health and safety? 03
3 Implementing good practice contractor
health andsafety in developed countries 05
4 Implementing good practice contractor
health andsafety in developing countries 06
5 Implementing good practice contractor
health andsafety in international contracts 07
6 Acknowledgments 08

A Keynote address: UK and North America
construction health and safety 09
B The UK Construction (Design and Management)
Regulations 2007: a global best practice 10
C Construction best practices: a global perspective 11
D The UK client’s perspective 12
E A multinational corporate perspective 13
F Contractor safety checklist 14
1 Introduction

These guidelines summarise the Note: Although the seminar’s title

presentations and subsequent refers to ‘best practice’, it’s less
discussions at a joint IOSH/ASSE contentious, but equally effective, to
seminar, Global best practices in use the term ‘good practice’ and the
contractor safety, held in London in discussion summaries therefore use the
October 2000. Around 60 delegates latter phrase.
attended, mostly based in the UK or
US but with international work
experience. Others had global
responsibilities managed from a UK or
US base. There were also delegates
from the Gulf states and Australia.
Overall, the delegates represented a
wide range of global health and safety

The seminar included five

presentations, which are summarised in
the appendices. Although three of
them focus on construction issues and
practices, much of their material has a
wider application. The two
presentations relating to the client’s
perspective cover the full range of
contracted services. After the
presentations, the delegates broke into
groups to share their experiences and
develop ideas concerning best practice
in a variety of situations. The following
sections summarise these group

2 What is good practice contractor health and safety?

2.1 2.3 2.5

Key aspects of good practice health For all contracts, good practice clients Good practice contracts will have the
and safety culture include: will: following elements:
- an organisational vision that - use health and safety responses to
includes ethical and moral values, pre-tender questionnaires 2.5.1 Before mobilisation
not just purely commercial reasons throughout the tender, clarification - monitoring against a contract-
for good health and safety results and award processes specific plan, developed using the
- externally verifiable excellent results - create a culture that fosters co- contractor’s specialist experience
– with consistently low injury, illness operation, co-ordination, where appropriate
and damage statistics in a culture of communication and competence, - ensuring workforce competence –
open, honest reporting avoiding confrontation based on maximise use of passport schemes
- management systems that take narrow interpretations of the to cover industry-wide competence
account of local situations but contract, both internally and with and training issues
which also meet global standards the contractor - agreement on suitable key
- excellent contractors working with - consistently manage their own performance indicators, including
excellent clients dealings with the contractor and relevant health and safety measures
- an expectation of continuous expect the contractor to do the - agreement on and communication
improvement in all aspects of health same with their subcontractors of co-operative culture, expected
and safety, aided by external - have clear contract health and health and safety performance
benchmarking safety management processes and standards and any rewards or
- enough resources and time accountabilities, including regular sanctions to be used
allocated for training and active monitoring and enforcement - consideration of client–contractor
competence development among of performance standards where team-building activities for safety-
workers, professionals and appropriate. critical contracts.
- prequalification of contractors and 2.4 2.5.2 On site (for contracts carried
subcontractors based on their Good practice contractors will out at the client’s premises)
regional or local, as well as global, consistently: - site- or contract-specific induction
processes and results. - identify hazards and implement risk- training, clearly linked to any
based controls for all their activities passport scheme used for generic
2.2 - create a culture which fosters co- inductions
For capital projects, good practice operation, co-ordination, - making sure that site inductions
clients will: communication and competence, include ‘good neighbour’ issues and
- make sure that overall project avoiding confrontation based on procedures, ie addressing the
objectives are realistic and don’t narrow interpretations of their expectations of local health and
compromise health and safety contract – both internally and with safety stakeholders
results; projects will be on time, on the client - providing suitable welfare facilities,
budget and safe - adopt up-to-date regional and making sure that the standard does
- stress best value over the life of the global health and safety standards not imply that contract personnel
project rather than lowest initial - be good practice clients for their are treated as ‘second class citizens’
cost own subcontractors. - active interface management and
- make sure that health and safety is regular review, particularly to ensure
thoroughly integrated into the consistent communication between
design phase as well as into client and contractor and joint
construction, start-up and operation ability to manage any pressures for
- make sure that there is enough improved performance, including
time and resources for adequate refusing to condone or ignore short
planning, for example when cuts
mobilising construction contractors.

- regular, planned joint health and 2.5.3 After completion of the
safety performance monitoring and contract (often forgotten or
feedback, including providing ignored)
enough time and resources for - adopt a holistic approach, covering
workplace contacts and worker the performance, both good and
representatives, where appointed bad, of the client, contractor and
- processes to communicate and subcontractors and its root causes
manage change, including the - link feedback and improvement
revision of risk assessments by opportunities to the likelihood of
competent people, and agreement repeat business orders; where
that changes mustn’t take place possible, expect and plan for more
without such assessments contracts with those who
- implementation of systems to demonstrate continuous health and
recognise and reward both good safety improvement
practice and new best practice – - make sure client and contractor
the systems should be clear, feedback is linked to agreed
consistent, communicated and precontract performance standards
followed, and may be used for and other expectations.
individuals and groups.

3 Implementing good practice contractor health
and safety in developed economies

Note: At the October 2000 seminar, If these issues are successfully Other aspects to consider include:
the phrase ‘developed countries’ was managed, the benefits for contractors - less confrontational contracts and
used. However, health and safety include: relationships can lead to the
standards vary greatly between - increased and retained skills and reduction of resources and costs
economic sectors as well as between experience devoted to accident claims and
countries. Some employment sectors in - market edge detailed contract variations
‘developed’ countries may have - reduction in losses and insurance - the UK’s Construction (Design and
‘developing economy’ health and costs. Management) Regulations 2007
safety characteristics, and vice versa. (CDM) – see Appendix B – represent
3.3 global best practice for defining
3.1 There are also some issues facing both construction project health and
There are two main issues for clients: clients and contractors: safety responsibilities, especially for
- leadership and focus on the key - investment in best practice may clients and designers. However,
health and safety issues must come appear as a short term cost, standard methods for complying
from clients, even where they’re less although most of the benefits are with the previous (1994) version of
familiar with the details of health long term CDM were overly bureaucratic.
and safety good practice than their - an adequate pre-qualification CDM 2007 has tried to address this
specialist contractors process requires significant effort, problem; only time will tell whether
- a need to move from the cheapest especially when it is also required to this approach has been successful.
price to value for money as the comply with free competition rules. - US employer liability insurance
award criterion – this requires more This can be eased by using industry- assessments and ranking represent
sophisticated tender assessment. or sector-wide systems and data, a global best practice to reflect
Transparency of the assessment and rather than company-specific actual health and safety results in
award process is still vital but harder processes premiums.
to achieve, because some elements - the desire for partnering and longer
of ‘value’ are not easy to assess term contracts is often affected by
monetarily. market conditions, and in some
situations can be difficult to
If these issues are successfully reconcile with an ‘independent
managed, the benefits for clients contractor’ philosophy
include: - there is a need to develop joint
- improved health and safety results, health and safety-related incentives
often linked with other business that drive the right individual, group
results and organisational behaviours. It’s
- transfer of skills and competence also necessary to incorporate
from the contractor to the client leading indicators, because
organisation traditional lagging indicators may
- reduced insurance costs become very rare events. However,
- positive relations with both internal when these do occur, a single
and external stakeholders. serious accident may not mean a
specific individual or group should
3.2 be identified as failing
The two main issues for contractors are: - although accidents represent failure,
- the need for comprehensive but they’re also learning opportunities.
simple risk assessments linked to Nevertheless, it can be difficult to
method statements, covering all investigate root causes fully and
tasks carried out share learning openly in the
- an increasing emphasis on success-oriented culture which
workforce competence and formal good practice and partnering
systems to demonstrate and verify typically aim to foster.
this, which can require significant
investment and management

4 Implementing good practice contractor health
and safety in developing economies

Note: At the October 2000 seminar, 4.2 4.2.2 Local workforce

the phrase ‘developed countries’ was For both clients and contractors, good - providing brief, practical and
used. However, health and safety practice solutions include: relevant training related to daily
standards vary greatly between hazards, rather than long courses
economic sectors as well as between 4.2.1 Management personnel - implementing an agreed education
countries. Some employment sectors in - the use of a core, highly skilled, and training strategy, and
‘developed’ countries may have expatriate management team which recognising and rewarding those
‘developing economy’ health and is familiar with, or can become showing positive behaviour and
safety characteristics, and vice versa. familiar with, local culture and willingness to learn
expectations - making sure that the local
4.1 - supplementing this with skilled local workforce feels valued, for example
The key issues are: people, training them elsewhere if by providing family welfare facilities
- communication – the need to be necessary to ensure that good - making time for individual
able to speak and listen to local practices are more readily communication about health and
people in their own language, not transferred safety good practices and involving
via interpreters - the setting of high personal families, perhaps in workplace
- the local availability of suitably safe standards by management team health issues
and reliable equipment. In some members, showing that all - fostering trust, for example by
cases, stopping work due to refusal members of the workforce are protecting local workers from
to accept substandard equipment, valued, and sharing a vision for hazards they may not be aware of.
though unpalatable, may be the national and/or local development
best long term solution including continuous health and
- community and/or government safety improvement
expectations for infrastructure - involving local government bodies to
development and education or increase their long term ownership
training as part of the contract, of and responsibility for health and
with the consequent widening of safety results, infrastructure, training
the extent of health and safety and education
issues to be managed, and the - being visible on site to engage with,
competent resources required praise and police the workforce
- the flawed assumption that health - monitoring results using meaningful
and safety standards always need to local measures, in addition to
be raised in the local workforce. required corporate criteria.
Where new workers are trained and
enabled to adopt good practices
from the start, developing economy
contractors often produce verifiable
health and safety results well in
advance of typical developed
economy results.

5 Implementing good practice contractor health
and safety in international contracts

5.1 5.2 - including all identifiable contractor

The key issues are: For both clients and contractors, good and subcontractor personnel in
- how to achieve an acceptable practice management solutions published corporate health and
balance between corporate and include: safety results and improvement
local values, standards and cultures - the publication of clear corporate targets
at a typical worksite (involving value statements covering ethics, - setting realistic, balanced health
international and/or national human rights and health and safety and safety key performance
employers) with a potentially risk acceptance indicators, including both leading
multinational workforce - being willing to challenge local and lagging indicators, and defining
- the availability and use of health and safety values and clear accountabilities
internationally agreed standards, for standards constructively, where - identifying leaders and followers
example from the International they’re lower than corporate ones, (from audit data) and encouraging
Labour Organization, the but accepting variances which are them to share best practices and
International Organization for based on local preferences – eg learn from each other, to disseminate
Standardization, the World Bank, working hours, dress or social good practices more quickly
the International Monetary Fund hierarchy - publishing and sharing results and
and the United Nations - in extreme cases, clients deciding to lessons learned, both internally and
(Note: The 2001 International decline to do business in certain through external bodies
Labour Organization guidelines for situations, or contractors walking - including poor results as well as
health and safety management away from certain clients good ones, since much can be
systems are particularly relevant in a - regularly updating internal bid lists learned from the root cause analysis
global context, as they’re designed with contract-specific feedback from of failures.
as a basis for sectoral and national all parties (see 2.5.3), using industry-
guidance as well as for direct use in wide feedback where available (eg
larger organisations.) First Point Assessment Ltd for the
- the key differences in style and UK sector of the North Sea)
content between major regional - at both corporate and site level,
health and safety standards, for implementing health and safety
example prescriptive versus goal- management systems, based on a
setting regimes, or the US recognised standard which includes
Occupational Safety and Health expectations of continuous
Administration versus the EU improvement from ‘good’ towards
versus the Association of South ‘best’ practice
East Asian Nations - using management system audit
- variations in type of contract and plans, reports and auditors as a
size of organisation – for example, means to drive and disseminate
those working on a small improvements, rather than as a
subcontract have much less basic ‘tick-box’ exercise
freedom of action.

6 Acknowledgments

We thank everyone who participated in If you have any comments or questions

this seminar and contributed their about this guide, please contact
experiences, both as speakers and in Research and Information Services at:
the subsequent discussions. In researchandinformation@iosh.co.uk ASSE
particular, we thank Black & Veatch, Rennie Heath
sponsor of this event. We also thank IOSH Manager, Practice Specialties
IRATA for permission to use the front The Grange ASSE
cover image. Highfield Drive 1800 East Oakton Street
Wigston Des Plaines
We’ve tried, in this summary, to Leicestershire IL 60018
identify the key points at issue and LE18 1NN USA
make them widely available as a basis UK
for further understanding of what t +1 847 768 3436
global good practice is in contractor t +44 (0) 116 257 3100 rheath@asse.org
health and safety. Many of the www.iosh.co.uk www.asse.org
practices identified may also be applied
to environmental hazards.

Appendix A – Keynote address: UK and North America
construction health and safety

Tackling the construction health and construction is largely driven by lowest All stakeholders in construction can
safety record in both the United cost rather than best value. make a positive contribution to health
Kingdom and the United States and safety in the industry by:
presents opportunities for identifying The CDM Regulations of 1994 brought - focusing on the relevant issues and
common problems, sharing good about one of the most significant of all where best to make the greatest
practice and exchanging information recent UK legislative initiatives by contribution
through partnership. engaging all responsible parties, - having an action plan and putting it
including clients and designers, in the into effect
Clients are beginning to realise that elimination or control of risk. One of - targeting resources to make it
taking an active role in achieving the objectives of the CDM Regulations happen.
construction health and safety makes is to reduce the overall risk introduced
sound commercial and financial sense. into the construction process by: Dr Rodger Evans
In simple terms, the client has - a strategic approach to health and Head of Construction Sector, Health
information on risk, while the safety in project design and Safety Executive
contractor’s role in managing risk is - planning and preparation, and the London, UK
pivotal in securing good health and execution of those plans
safety practices on site. However, the - the effective management and co- Addendum
project designer or architect often ordination of health and safety Since this event, in addition to
introduces risk and the workers must throughout improving CDM, there have been
almost always endure the risk. - the selection of competent and further UK initiatives, including one
Everyone in the construction chain has resourceful professionals aimed at improving worker
a crucial role in reducing unacceptable - the improved management of competence through minimum
loss. construction work. knowledge requirements (passport
scheme) and another standardising the
From the UK perspective, much still In 1998, a Construction Task Force pre-qualification scheme for those
needs to be done. The USA’s published Rethinking construction, tendering for construction work. There
Occupational Safety and Health which cited particularly the need to have also been national awareness
Administration has published a goal secure a cultural change to ensure the raising projects on issues such as
for 2000 and beyond of “sending provision of decent and safe working working at height, co-operative
every worker home whole and healthy conditions. The UK government then working, and various construction-
every day”, and such a laudable goal assisted industry in the development of related occupational health issues,
is equally valid in the UK. Given that the Movement for innovation initiative including asbestos.
the construction industry in both the to help carry forward the findings of the
UK and US exposes people to higher Task Force’s report. The government, In 2009, a report for the government
than average risk, with the worst recognising itself to be one of the into the underlying causes of fatal
health and safety record of any largest procurers of construction work, accidents in construction made 28
industrial sector, the successful then launched its Achieving excellence recommendations for improvement,
management of those risks poses campaign to enhance the health and including amending the Building
special problems. safety performance of government Regulations to cover the safety of the
departments. building process, positive directors’
Endemic problems include: duties and licensing of gangmasters in
- an itinerant workforce In mid-2000, 10 government construction.
- too little skill and experience departments and agencies working
- lack of investment in training together launched Revitalising health In the last decade, the construction
- inadequate access to health and and safety, a 10-year programme aimed industry worldwide has benefited from
safety advice, especially for small at raising the profile of health and safety, the development of high speed global
companies. and promoting better working communications, meaning that best
conditions for all. The strategy contains practice solutions can be shared more
However, the extent of the problem is several specific action points for the quickly and widely.
greater than can be explained simply construction industry, as well as planned
by contractors, clients and designers changes to the current penalty structure, John Lacey
not acting responsibly. Too often, in an effort to improve enforcement and Chair, IOSH Construction Group
safety during construction is perceived to deter some employers from breaking
as the responsibility of the contractor the law, especially at the expense of
alone. A continuing problem is that their workers.
Appendix B – The UK Construction (Design
and Management) Regulations 2007:
a global best practice

Safety management has evolved from rethink their approach to health and To accomplish this, the principal
‘no interest’ through ‘focus on safety in order to co-ordinate and contractor prepares a construction
incidents or problems’ to ‘focus on manage a construction project phase plan that lists key tasks,
systems to deal with health and safety’ effectively. including:
and finally to an inclusive ‘focus on an - implementing the plan
entire vision of a project’. Clients must use only competent - setting up safe systems, such as
personnel and be satisfied that segregation of traffic and
Before the implementation of the CDM sufficient resources – including time – pedestrians
Regulations in 1994 and the recent are allocated to the project. Designers - employing competent contractors
updated version in 2007, there were must work to avoid risks to health and - obtaining and checking method
invariably differences in the way that safety, or at least to minimise them. statements
the client, architect, structural engineer, Information about the risks which - providing training for and
safety adviser and contractor each cannot be designed out must be communication with competent
perceived a project. Now, with provided to the CDM co-ordinator contractors
improved communication between (CDMC) to be included in the - preventing unauthorised access to
these parties, there is a better climate preconstruction phase health and the site
for competently managed, accident- safety information document. In turn, - monitoring and review of all
free, completed-on-time construction the CDMC (which may be a group systems.
projects. within an organisation, not necessarily
a single person) ensures that an A final responsibility is for the CDMC
Co-operation, partnership and information document is prepared and to hand over a project file containing
planning are key elements of any must monitor the health and safety health and safety information that the
project but are particularly important in aspects of the design which will be project user may need, for example to
construction. Competent contractors included in the information document. manage health and safety during
can provide an innovative team which maintenance activities, refurbishment
values health and safety, information, The principal contractor is then and so on.
training, planning and public responsible for taking over the health
protection. An important element in and safety information to prepare and Bob Sayers
achieving these values is a monitoring implement a construction phase plan, Group Safety, Health and Environment
system that takes account of a project’s co-ordinating the activities of all Manager, Redrow plc
accident potential and the need for risk contractors, ensuring co-operation London, UK
assessment. between all the relevant parties and
providing information, training and
The CDM Regulations 2007 require consultation with employees.
clients, designers and contractors to

Appendix C – Construction best practices:
a global perspective

The speaker used Black & Veatch’s organise their tasks effectively by Black & Veatch puts together joint
health and safety programme to identifying hazards and preparing a labour/management health and safety
illustrate his presentation. plan to control them agreements which help to define
- fall protection and working in awareness, responsibility,
The key elements of a health and confined spaces – the areas of most recommendations, scheduling,
safety programme are: concern. inspections and (if necessary)
- utilising the most stringent of investigations, and other reviews. In
governmental, international and The beginning of the construction this way, all participants in a
Black & Veatch requirements phase triggers daily activities such as: construction project are jointly aware
- involving senior level management - a crew safety meeting and responsible and can contribute
- providing an on-site safety - communication of health and safety from their own personal experience
manager, certified in the relevant information among employees and expertise.
country - supervisor safety meetings, which
- involving local health and safety devolve accountability to front line Les Murphy
personnel. supervisors. Health and Safety Manager, Black &
Veatch Energy Services
While the project is in preparation, the Emergency plans must be established Kansas City, USA
following should be considered: with strategies in place for:
- contractor prequalification, - heavy lift activities
including a background check and - scaffold tagging, grounding
insurance review [earthing]
- pre-employment procedures, - barrier identification and tagging
including drug and alcohol - 100 per cent fall protection
screening and site safety - hazardous materials labelling
orientation, plus specific task - hearing conservation and protection
orientation with a middle - respirator systems.
management foreman
- employee training, including 10 Additional safeguards typically include
hours of class time a permit-to-work system, particularly
- cardiopulmonary resuscitation/first linked with the commissioning of
aid, emergency procedures equipment, and an inspection system
- the presentation of a job hazard for fire watches, and aerial lifts, if these
analysis. This allows the workers to are used.

Appendix D – The UK client’s perspective

The speaker used AstraZeneca’s health of projects. These alliances have

and safety programme to illustrate his provided project timescale reductions
presentation. of more than 30 per cent, with
attendant cost benefits.
Safety is implicit in best practice – and
best practice results in both time and It can be demonstrated that, as the
cost benefits. There is no bad safety – number of alliance partnership projects
only bad safety management. increases, costs reduce in the areas of
electrical works, piping, steelwork and
AstraZeneca operates by forming design, while safety performance
alliances with strategic partners; it does improves.
not rely on one organisation satisfying
all its needs. In a typical project, Safety management is a vital part of
AstraZeneca manages the construction, best practice and through it both client
and works with partner organisations and contractor benefit. Even where
to facilitate the implementation of different methods are used, in
shared goals and strategies, continuity countries outside the UK, the same
on site and familiarity with standards standards of project and operational
and systems. The additional benefits of safety must be achieved.
such alliances include an extended
knowledge base which promotes input John Sudgen
and challenge during the design phase Construction Group Head, AstraZeneca
and encourages innovation in a variety Manchester, UK

Appendix E – A multinational corporate perspective

The speaker used Hasbro Inc’s health The safety process involves Postwork requirements include a
and safety programme to illustrate his prequalification review and pre- and contractor performance evaluation that
presentation. postwork requirements. During the rates the contractor’s performance in
prequalification review, the contractor eight categories. This evaluation will
Hasbro’s challenge has been to make completes a safety questionnaire which determine whether the contractor will
contractor safety management a summarises the contractor’s safety remain on an approved bidder list.
globally consistent process, but with programme, performance, training
locally relevant implementation. standards and any certification. As part Hasbro’s process for managing risks
of the prework requirements, project comprises five basic operating
The organisation uses a range of and safety co-ordinators at the site principles:
contractors to achieve its ultimate complete a safety orientation for - management commitment and
goals of ensuring business continuity contractor personnel, which includes: leadership
and preventing damage to people, - adherence to government - risk identification, evaluation and
property and the environment. Its regulations control
specific aim is to prevent all contractor - reporting injuries - responsibility and accountability
accidents – even near misses – - housekeeping and storage - employee involvement
particularly those associated with slips, - personal protective equipment - continuous improvement.
trips and falls, electrical incidents, fire - fall protection
hazards and defective equipment and - fire protection Jack Popp
tools. The inherent risks in the type of - working in confined spaces. Director of Corporate Safety, Health,
work activities involved in a project are Environment and Security Services,
considered, together with effective Hasbro Inc
means of ensuring that any contractors Pawtucket, Rhode Island, USA
hired have safety knowledge and
commitment and have undergone

Appendix F – Contractor safety checklist

Introduction As outlined above, many organisations Notes

This checklist is intended for use by will act as both client and contractor in The checklist is self-explanatory when
internal or external assessors as a different circumstances, so we’ve used used alongside the rest of this guide,
simple way of recording and a single checklist. For convenience, we but the brief best practice descriptions
summarising how well an organisation give a cross-reference to the relevant listed here are not sufficient on their
is following the best practices section of the IOSH/ASSE guide for own.
recommended in the guide. We’ve each practice, and also an abbreviation
included section references to the to show whether it applies to clients In the second column, ‘App’ is short
guide for convenience. (Cl) or contractors (Co). You can mark for ‘Applicability’ and can refer to
as ‘not applicable’ those items that are clients (Cl), contractors (Co) or both.
A key concept in the guide is that not relevant to the organisation you’re
clients need to use occupational safety assessing, but remember that most Scoring system
and health (OSH) best practices so that contractors will also act as clients for n/a This element is not applicable to the
their contractors can do likewise. In their subcontractors. organisation being assessed
turn, contractors need to be best 0 No or minimal evidence that this
practice clients for their own Using the results practice is in effective use. The
subcontractors. The single checklist For comparison, the assessment results opportunities for improvement are
therefore covers both roles – client and can be converted to an overall obvious, so need not be
contractor. Improvement Opportunity rating, using summarised
the method given at the end of the 1 The practice is only partly deployed
Completing the checklist checklist. An Improvement Opportunity and/or effective. Complete the
You can use the checklist to assess of 25 per cent or lower indicates that ‘Opportunities for improvement’
either a whole organisation or a part. contractor OSH best practices are widely column to summarise how it could
The assessor may need evidence from deployed and effective. A score of 50 be made fully effective
documents, interviews and worksite per cent shows many opportunities for 2 The practice is fully deployed and
observations before coming to a firm improvement, and a score of over 50 per fully effective across the
decision about each best practice. Any cent indicates serious deficiencies organisation
inconsistencies in the evidence can be compared with best practice – there
recorded in the ‘Opportunities for must be some zero assessments, not If you need an overall assessment score
improvement’ column. balanced by an equivalent number of 2s. (see ‘Using the results’ above),
calculate it as follows:
The most revealing evidence is typically However, this is a relatively crude
found at worksite level, rather than in measure and you should be careful not There are 63 best practices overall. Let
documents – some practices may be to use this percentage rating in an X equal the number of practices
very effective without being perfectly overly simplistic or competitive way. assessed as not applicable, and let Y
documented. Conversely, many good The most fruitful benefits are likely to equal the overall total score (on page
practices may be clearly described in come from a detailed review of the 17). The Improvement Opportunity (IO)
internal documents, but more or less opportunities for improvement, leading score can be expressed algebraically as:
absent in the workplace. It’s important to a prioritised improvement plan.
to assess whether each practice is both IO = (2 ¥ (63 -X) -Y) ¥
fully deployed (ie available for use This type of application could be used 100 / (2 ¥ (63 - X))
wherever it’s needed) and fully as an example of continual
effective. The rating scheme combines improvement within a wider OSH ‘Using the results’ above tells you how
these two aspects; a more complex management system audit or to interpret this figure.
rating could be devised which verification process.
considers each aspect separately. Do you know of any other best
practices that aren’t included in this
guidance? If so, please let us know
using the contact details on page 08,
so that we can include them in future

Best practice App Score Opportunities for improvement

2.1 OSH culture

OSH more than just ‘good business’ Both

Verifiable excellent results Both

Open, honest reporting Both

OSH management system standard Both

Expectation of continuous improvement Both

Resources for competence development Both

Prequalification includes local OSH results Both

2.2 Capital projects

Realistic objectives and timescales Cl

Best value, not lowest initial cost Cl

OSH integrated into all phases,
including design
Adequate planning Cl

2.3 All projects

OSH pre-tender responses used Cl

Non-confrontational culture Cl

Consistent interface management Cl

OSH accountabilities, active monitoring,
2.4 All projects

Hazard identification, risk-based controls Co

Non-confrontational culture Co

Global or regional OSH standards used Co

2.5.1 Contracts – pre-mobilisation

Contract-specific plan, contractor buy-in Both

Workforce competence, including
passport schemes
OSH key performance indicators Both
Agree performance standards (PSs),
rewards and sanctions
Team-building activities Both

Page total

Best practice App Score Opportunities for improvement

2.5.2 Contracts – on site

Site/contract-specific inductions Both

Community expectations in induction Both

Welfare facilities Both

Active interface management and review Both

Planned OSH monitoring and feedback Both

Effective change management Both

Good/best OSH practices recognised and
2.5.3 Contracts – after completion
Identify and feed back root causes of
good and bad results
Link this feedback to future work
Compare feedback with pre-contract PSs Both

5.2 International contracts

Published corporate values Both

Challenging local OSH standards where
‘Walking away’ from some work
Current bid lists Both

OSH management system standard Both

Audits for continuous improvement Both

Published corporate OSH results include
Balanced OSH key performance indicators Both
Best practice sharing, based on audit
Internal and external publishing of lessons
Willingness to share lessons from failures Both

Page total

Best practice App Score Opportunities for improvement
3.1 Implementation in developed
economies – clients
Clear OSH leadership and focus Cl

Contracts awarded on best value Cl

3.2 Implementation in developed
economies – contractors
Simple, comprehensive risk assessments Co

Demonstrating workforce competence Co

3.3 Implementation in developed
economies – clients and contractors
Investing resources in best practices Both

Adequate prequalification Both

Partnering arrangements Both

OSH incentives Both

Learning from accidents Both

4.2.1 Implementation in developing
economies – management personnel
Highly skilled core management team Both

Locals trained elsewhere if needed Both

Managers’ personal standards and
community vision
Local government bodies involved Both

Management visibility with local workers Both

Both corporate and local OSH results
4.2.2 Implementation in developing
economies – local workforce
Practical, focused local training Both

Training/education strategy Both

Valued local workforce Both

Targeted workforce OSH communications Both

Fostering trust Both

Page total

Overall total

IOSH IOSH is the Chartered body for health and safety
The Grange professionals. With more than 44,000 members
Highfield Drive in over 120 countries, we’re the world’s largest
Wigston professional health and safety organisation.
LE18 1NN We set standards, and support, develop and
UK connect our members with resources, guidance,
events and training. We’re the voice of the
t +44 (0)116 257 3100 profession, and campaign on issues that affect
www.iosh.co.uk millions of working people.
facebook.com/IOSHUK IOSH was founded in 1945 and is a registered
tinyurl.com/IOSH-linkedin charity with international NGO status.

Institution of Occupational
Safety and Health
Founded 1945
Incorporated by Royal Charter 2003
Registered charity 1096790 FS 60566