Top companies have excellent safety records and they measure this in hours worked that are accident free. A good example can be found in John Deere, who currently haven’t had an accident for 14 million hours. It is this record that makes the company one of the leading examples in the industry. What kind of processes do they have in order to achieve this? According to John Deere, it is down to ongoing communication, employee engagement, safety processes and management support. Through these steps, they have stopped injuries from occurring both on and off the job.
John Deere is responsible for a number of key safety processes. One process is the safety and ergonomic risk assessment (SERA). The SERA process allows hazards to be identified and eliminated. Also, they use continuous improvement, or CI. Through CI, teams work hard to identify any safety concerns, and address these. All John Deere offices use CI boards, which show current projects and their status, as well as a responsible officer. Then, they use the “red tag” process. Through red tag, every piece of equipment is reviewed and maintained before it is sent out on a job. Finally, they have ergo days. These days bring together people from all the levels of the company to discuss possible improvement for employee safety.
These processes are inspiring, but what can you learn from them? The first thing you should pick up on is that the company is clearly dedicated to investing in their employees. This is an instance where you need to spend money in order to make money. Yes, it can be expensive to invest in your staff, but it is certainly a lot more expensive if they get injured and are unable to work. Additionally, remember that there is a chance that an employee injury may mean not just downtime, but also legal action against you. Something else you can learn is that it is incredibly important to speak to everybody in your company. Only if you focus on employee engagement, whereby every person in the company has a real voice, will you have a great safety record. As such, what you need to do is make sure that safety processes aren’t imposed, but rather that they are agreed upon together. Last but not least, it is about making sure that any machinery you use is in perfect condition. Whether your use photocopiers or bulldozers, all of them have to be maintained properly and this should leave a paper trail as well.