At JSPL safety and health are accorded the highest importance and are integral to the manner in which we conduct our business. The company has put in place a robust system for safety management with an Occupational Health and Safety Policy that incorporates standard operating procedures, instructions, safe methods of work and work permit system.
To further strengthen its safety standards at a cultural level we recently started introducing our employees to behavioural safety education, training and practices. The emphasis of this initiative is to continuously strengthen the safety culture in the organization through a process reliant on behaviour-based safety observation.
Employees/contractors who observe an unsafe act are encouraged to report the same through suggestion drop boxes placed at all units. HR departments collect these suggestions and routes them to the safety department for review. Following such a review the safety department identifies root causes and works with the concerned plant to implement corrective and preventive measure. Employees making valuable suggestions are awarded to promote greater involvement of employees in this programme.
The safety department conducts audits at units to identify strengths and weaknesses of the current system, identify risks of personal injury, and promote employee participation and morale. The scope of the audit also includes proper and safe use of equipment and of PPEs by employees.
Achieving Safety Excellence
At JSPL we believe in prioritising safety and health of our people and incorporating this as a value. Safety is embedded across the organisation and is an integral part of how we conduct our business. It is our continuous effort to make it an ever safe place. In the past years effective implementation of the safety policy at all levels so as to achieve zero harm was the aim. World class technology along with highest safety standards accounts for basic business ethics.
Conventionally, safety is considered to be focused on equipment, housekeeping, tools, machinery guarding and as a responsibility limited to the safety department. Though this forms the foundation for achieving safe working conditions and a safe workplace, safety cannot be limited to this. At JSPL, we have put in place a robust system for safety management through Occupational Health and Safety Policy, standard operating procedures, instructions, safe methods of work, work permit system etc. However, in spite of these system and procedures, injuries have still happened at work. It was realised that safety performance levelled out after a while and employees had a tendency to revert back to old practices. For example, a tool-box talk illustrating correct handling techniques will result in correct techniques on the day of the talk; however, over time employees have a tendency to revert to earlier practices. These highlighted the need for reinforcing correct procedures and bring about a change in behaviour.
There are various reasons for unsafe behaviour – varying from pressure on production leading to compromised safety, use of short-cuts (as they are easier, simpler and save time), because of stress, fatigue and distraction, and also due to lack of supervision. These issues can be reduced, if not completely eliminated, by building a culture of safety. It has also been observed that effective safety culture can help in improving overall operational costs and efficiency of operations through reduced incidents.
At JSPL, we have recently started to improve on our safety culture by building on a culture of safety. This is driven by was on transforming the employees by introducing them to behavioural safety education, training and practices. The emphasis was on continuously strengthening safety culture in the organization through behaviour-based safety observation and feedback processes. Observations provide direct and measurable information on an employee’s safe work practices. Therefore a system of reporting near misses and unsafe acts is also in place. Employees / contractors who observe and unsafe act are encouraged to report the same through the suggestion scheme drop box at all units. Respective HR department collects these suggestions and routes it to the safety department for their review. The safety department reviews the suggestions received and decides on the root cause. The department works with the respective plant to implement the corrective and preventive action to prevent any unsafe act. After the review, if the suggestion is found to be valuable, the observer is also awarded to promote greater involvement from the employees. The safety department conducts audits at units to identify strengths and weaknesses of the current system, identify risks of personal injury, and promote employee participation and morale. The scope of the audit also includes proper and safe use of equipment and use of PPEs by employees. In case of employees using equipment without PPEs, the employees are issued warnings and memo letters. Counselling of the respective employees is conducted, by safety officers, which may be followed by safety trainings.
Behavioural safety at JSPL is driven through three key steps:-
- Demonstrating OHS commitment and defining how we want to excel in safety performance: This is done through formal and informal communication regarding OHS. To achieve this effective communication, we have ensured that all our management systems have incorporated strong OHS values and are written and communicated in a manner that is accessible to all staff, as seen in business management manuals, visual symbols and objects and communications initiated by the OHS Head. The OHS Head further drives organizational safety values and accountabilities by asking senior management during meetings to indicate how they have displayed their commitment to safety. At Patratu - Monthly Mass Safety Meeting” by all Department Heads are carried out in their respective departments in which they address their staff at shop floor/sites and encourage them to adopt safety norms while execution of daily work. Active employees are being rewarded on the spot for promoting safe work culture. This step had impacted a lot in improving the awareness level of employees by positive transformation in their behaviour.
- Developing understanding amongst the employees and influencing them to adopt correct practices: Trainings and awareness sessions are conducted to update employees about the key safety related risks and opportunities for improvement. Employees are, also, awarded for identifying unsafe acts / practices / hazards. At Barbil - A subtotal of 24 numbers of class room training programs including one seminar (external) was conducted with 614 employees. On the job trainings have been conducted. Overall across the group employees have undergone the trainings on various safety related topics.
- Building an environment that supports and encourages safety behaviour: At JSPL we encourage safety behaviour and ensure that right safety practices are reinforced regularly. This involves experience and knowledge sharing by the trainers as well as the employees during meetings. In these meetings, each employee participates and shares his part of ideas and suggestions or lacking’s that could be improvised. Safety practices such as mock drills are also conducted once every quarter.
Although improving OHS is a shared responsibility, the demonstrated commitment of supervisors and reinforced safe behaviour for employees is vital to improving OHS. JSPL has embarked on this journey of improving safety performance through behavioural based safety initiatives. We encourage all employees to be our partners in making JSPL a leader in OHS performance, by greater commitment to safety.