A question Safe365 has been continuously and increasingly asked by our clients over the past six months, particularly CEO’s, is whether they have their overlapping responsibilities covered when it comes to 3rd party contractors in their supply chain.
“We are experiencing a significant increase in CEO’s, managing directors and board members wanting to know how effective their business is in meeting their shared responsibilities,” says Mark Kidd of Safe365.
With a PCBU being responsible for the health and safety factors it can reasonably control, and with a parent contractor having contractual control over sub-contractors and suppliers, it is expected that the principal and lead contractors ensure their sub-contractors maintain and improve their health and safety capability and performance over time.
“The traditional approaches to this challenge simply aren’t working anymore under the recently introduced health and safety legislation. The CEO and other officers, such as directors and executive team members, are ultimately responsible for ensuring that any contractor entering their sites are taking health and safety seriously. It is not just about a snapshot in time compliance procedure before winning or awarding work, but about ongoing, real-time, compliance and continuous improvement and the ability of the purchasing organization to have a “clear line of sight” right across their entire whole supply chain” says Mr. Kidd.
“For a number of clients switching over to Safe365 they have worked out that their immediate sub-contractor is only the thin edge of the wedge when it comes to managing their supply chain’s health and safety capability – there are the immediate sub-contractors and then the contractors one, two and sometimes three tiers away from the main contractor – in effect the whole supply chain.”
To address this challenge, Safe365 has added new features to its market-leading product to allow the purchasing organisation to not only meet the immediate needs of sub-contractor compliance but also allow a ‘real-time’ view of the subcontractors’ health and safety capability throughout the supply chain, accessible anytime, anywhere, with the ability to look through the contractor supply chain to any level or layer. Mr Kidd says “we now have organisations able to see the health and safety capability of any of their subcontractors right through to several tiers from the principal and main contractor – we have moved from ‘the great unknown to the known’ with clients having a ‘line of sight’ throughout the whole supply chain.”
For the sub-contractor or supplier, each is required to meet its responsibilities under the health and safety legislation and while Safe365 is designed primarily as an assessment and improvement system to achieve this fundamental objective, new features released in the product allow the sub-contractor to simply ‘share’ its health and safety capability and evidence of practice with any other party it wishes to. There is no extra cost involved in sharing their health and safety capability with anyone in the supply chain. “It’s about taking out costs and complexity for the end user, lifting the veil of secrecy traditionally associated with existing contractor pre-qualification products and allowing entities to share their health and safety capability and culture with each other so that all entities involved can make sure the job is done safely and all compliance responsibilities are met in an efficient and informative manner” says Mr Kidd.
The CEO of a large enterprise recently lamented “I have discovered that despite procurement in place, and the thoroughness of my procurement people, the fact of the matter is that I have over 5,000 contractors in my supply chain… it’s near on impossible to be across all of them using traditional means. It’s like Pandora’s box. What I do know is that I could be deemed personally liable for harmful events that occur in that supply chain, so my senior people and I need to see what they are up to and ensure they can meet our requirements as a supplier on an ongoing basis.”
Mr. Kidd concluded that “the sheer size of the supply chain has traditionally made it challenging for organizations to be across this complex area in a cost-effective manner. Safe365 has turned the complex into something simple, easy to use, transparent and cost-effective. The feedback that we are getting from our clients and their contractors is extremely positive with a recent customer survey rating Safe365 as 9/10 or better on all aspects including product quality and fit, positive impact for the business, ease of use, value for money and customer service. It is all about the journey of creating a safer and healthier place for people to work in – we are definitely challenging the norm” says Mr. Kidd.
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