Excellence in workplace safety: Tools and methods for maximum safety

A comprehensive concept must be developed in order to achieve the highest level of occupational safety. Any such concept must include various tools, methods and best practices and these have to be carefully coordinated.

When Roland Piff is asked what the perfect occupational safety concept looks like, he tends to falter somewhat. The 57-year-old is Head of HSE at Bilfinger Life Science and has been dealing with occupational safety issues for more than 30 years. “There is probably no such thing as the perfect concept”, he says. “But a concept that manages to combine and coordinate highly effective tools and methods is very close to the ideal.”

He is convinced that training and information campaigns form the basis for all occupational safety measures. It is vital that these campaigns succeed in communicating the basic rules that apply to all employees and managers throughout the Group. “At Bilfinger, we call these basic principles ‘Life Saving Rules’. With our Line of Fire campaign, we want to clearly communicate these key issues to our employees. If everyone adheres to them, then we have already achieved a great deal. The most important lever for a high level of occupational safety is, after all, the employees themselves”, says Piff.

The most important lever for a high level of occupational safety is, after all, the employees themselves."

Roland PiffHead of HSE, Bilfinger Life Science

For this reason, the examination of work permits, the implementation of the safety precautions listed in them, and the last-minute risk analyses are of central importance. Before any work begins, the employee must first take a close look at the potential hazards involved and take the necessary time to prevent unforeseen situations from arising in the first place. A checklist in the last-minute risk analysis helps them remember all the necessary steps. 

“However, potential risks to employee health can also be identified through safety walks”, Piff explains. “A lot of accidents could be prevented before they even happen If managers take the time to have regular discussions with employees and inspect workplaces and walkways for potential hazards. It is really important, however, that these safety inspections are carried out regularly and systematically and that they are also documented in writing.” The HSEQ app developed internally by Bilfinger has proven to be helpful in this regard: With this app, all employees can easily document HSEQ-relevant events on their smartphones and forward them to the central HSEQ software. This simplified process makes a significant contribution to a better data landscape, more effective investigation and prevention of incidents, and thus to greater safety.

According to Piff, the foundation of daily safety work also includes measures that provide information on how to handle equipment or situations safely. These include daily safety briefings, regular meetings on occupational safety, safety days and knowledge cards containing notes on the most important safety rules for different trades and equipment. “It is crucial that all these measures are not only kept up to date, but that they are also presented in a way that is appealing”, says Piff. “Because then employees are motivated when it comes to occupational safety and actively work toward continuous improvement. And that is the basis for the highest level of occupational health and safety.”

Your contact for questions:

Roland Piff
Leiter HSE
Bilfinger Life Science
Phone +43 664 6157723

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