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Questions:

1. Identify five (5) external motivators that will prompt Acci Dent Window Cleaning to develop an a WHS management system.

2. Identify five (5) internal motivators that will prompt Acci Dent Window Cleaning to develop a WHS management system. 

3. The Acci Dent Window Cleaning management decided to develop a WHS management system to manage safety in the workplace. In developing a WHS management system, stakeholders need to be consulted. Identify five (5) stakeholders which management needs to consult when developing a WHS management system. (10 marks)
4. Name at least five (5) workplace processes that can be combined in a methodical and ordered manner to minimise the risk of injury or ill health in the workplace. 

5. What changes need to be made to the present Work Health Safety Management System (WHSMS) of the company?

6. How will you ensure that staff maintain an ongoing commitment to the new WHSMS?

Legal Obligation

1. Acci Dent Window Cleaning is an organization that involves work of cleaning windows at heights. It is just a 4 year old organization and came into controversies due to an accident happened with two of its employees when they were cleaning a window of second floor. Accidently the extension ladder used by them was toppled and both of them fall off the ladder and both employees suffered serious injuries (Butler, 2015). After happening of this incident Acci Dent Window Cleaning Company went under investigation of Safework NSW and icare and there were several safety issues or breaches of safety were identified by them (The Guardian, 2015). Therefore, from this case study, it can be concluded that the external motivators that led Acci Dent Window Cleaning to adopt and develop a WHS management plan includes legal obligations by government inspections, customer/ contract demand or pressure from the market, corporate reputation/image, and many other which are discussed briefly below:

Legal Obligation: Government of Australia has developed Safework to provide protection to the employees against any incident occurred during work due to safety breaches by the organization. It has been found in the investigation of Safework that Acci Dent had several safety issues due to which this accident happened and company was penalized with $75,000 (UOW, 2016). Therefore, after this penalty and guidance from Safework, Acci Dent was forced to develop WHS management system.

Contracts/Client: The clients who hire such contractors to do their work are under pressure of maintaining safety protections as in case of any accident happens at their site; they also had to face legal obligations. After this incident of Acci Dent when two employees suffered injuries, clients contracts with Acci Dent only after proper safety measurements for employees assured by the organization (RRC, 2019). Therefore, such contracts from clients forced the company to develop WHS management system. 

Corporate Image: As it has been only four years to Acci Dent Window Cleaning in the market and happening of such a major accident at the work site of the company which causes serious and major injuries to the workers, leads to affect the reputation of the company in the market. Clients do not hire or contract with companies who has serious safety breaches as it doubt them about major accidents in future also. This is going to affect the image of the company and also will cause loss for the organization (Australian Government, HLTWHS601A Improve workplace WHS Processes, 2012). Therefore, company was under pressure of assuring safety measures for employees as well as for the clients in order to maintain the reputation of the company.

Customer/Contract Pressure

Answer 2. Apart from the external investigations about the incident, an internal investigation also carried out by the organization. In the internal investigation, several safety breaches and insensitive measures are found by the organization due to which this accident has caused. The main internal factor that was observed at the Acci Dent is its work culture and organizational goals because there are some organizations which consider safety issues on priority and treat it as a serious matter not only in terms of policy making but also properly and effectively implementation of these policies. Internal investigation found lack of systematic approach for managing WHS in the workplace (HSE, 2008). One example of this includes missing of formal consultation procedures at the organization to handle safety issues. It was also found that the safety supervisor, Eddy Mann, was incompetent and inexperienced for the post as he was solely responsible for the safety issues of the organization. Also he was appointed as unofficial safety officer of the organization and does consist of any formal documents regarding any safety concern at the work site if staff makes a concern on safety issues and resolve the problems just by evaluation. He only had notes in his diary which shows the unsympathetic behaviour of the organization towards safety of its employees. It has also observed that the two employees who got injured in this accident had only basic knowledge of English and nothing knows about WHS policies. These safety breaches led the organization to rethink about the safety measures of the organization (Worksafe, Introduction to Workplace Health and Safety: An Overview, 2018). The internal factors that motivated organization to develop WHS management system include:

    • The need of making staff more knowledgeable about the tasks. Development of WHS plan will guide about different tasks to the employees(Worksafe, Introduction to Workplace Health and Safety: An Overview, 2018).

  • To provide information about the equipment to the workers. WHS plan will provide guidance to the employees about different types of tools and equipment and their use for different tasks(Alford, Lynch, Rosenblum, & Kullmann, 2015).
  • A proper WHS development plan will allow a good communication medium between employees and managers or supervisors. A good and open communication will let the supervisors to know more about the needs, concerns, and suggestions of their employees(Safe Work Australia, 2014).
  • WHS management plan will not only provide guidance to the workers but also guide supervisors to take a note about safety measures at work site and execution of procedures carefully(Worksafe, Guide to the Work Health and Safety Act 2011, 2011).
  • It will make easy for employees to act under the procedures settled by WHS act and not to set different regulations by organization to provide safety guidance to the employees. It will also eliminate confusion between organization and employees as all the guidance provided in WHS plan are according to the law(Australian Government, PSPSOHS601A Develop a systematic approach to managing OHS, 2012).

Answer 3. After the incident which happened at the work site of Acci Dent and as a result of this accident, organization had to face a penalty of $75,000. In the above two answers, it has been identified that this accident resulted in pressure from various internal and external factors on the organization to develop a WHS management plan which was found lacking in the organization in investigation by Safework (COS, 2019). Therefore, company decided to develop a WHS plan in the company. In order to develop a safety plan for the organization, it requires consultation from various entities or stakeholders who are responsible for developing and maintaining a WHS plan (WRLA, 2017). There are five stakeholders identified which are responsible and who should be consulted by Acci Dent Window Cleaning before developing a WHS management plan. These five types of Stakeholders involves in WHS management plan development are:

  • Government agencies
  • Consultants, academics, and professional association
  • Union representatives
  • Employer Associations
  • Health and Safety representatives

Corporate Image

Government Agencies: The main government body that is responsible for development and implementation of safety measures at the workplace is OHS committee. Acci Dent have to consult with OHS committee before making any WHS management system in order to take knowledge about the rules and guidelines necessary for their organization which means safety guidelines related to the window cleaning at heights (NSW, Easy to do Work Health and Safety, 2017).


Employer Associations: A WHS management plan is developed and implemented by various employers of the company; hence their consultation is necessary before making a WHS management system. These employers include managers and supervisors. Managers are responsible for developing a safety plan for the organization while the job of a supervisor is to ensure that all the safety guidelines are being followed or implemented properly (HSA, 2009).

Union Representatives: Representatives of safety are involved as safety committee members and thus responsible for managing and improving health and safety at workplace. They are responsible for identifying dangerous occurrence and potential hazards, evaluation of accidents’ causes, investigating complaints by employees regarding health and safety, inspect workplace, and receive and pass on information from HSE inspector (Quinlan, Bohle, & Lamm, 2010).

Consultants, academics, and professional association: Guidance is required from professional and consultants in order to implement the plan efficiently and effectively. Consultants of safety issues have complete knowledge about the safety measure suggested by Safework and could help the organization in proper development and implementation of WHS management system (New Science, 2014).

Health and Safety Representatives: These entities have accurate information related to health and safety required at workplace. Therefore, their suggestion is required to get information regarding steps and safety measures that need to be implemented to ensure healthy and safe work environment for employees (OSHA, 2019).

Answer 4. Below are the steps in order that need to be implemented in order to maintain health and safety of employees at the workplace:

    1. First step in the process of healthy and safe work environment is the commitment from organization and management. If an organization is not concerned about its employees’ health and safety then the aim of developing a safe and healthy environment to work for employees. Therefore, an organization should be committed towards its employees’ safety. This starts with consultation with various parties and individuals about content, purpose, and utilities of a WHSMS(Worksafe, Guide to the Work Health and Safety Act 2011, 2011). This will allow a chance to everyone for sharing their suggestions.

  1. Second step of the process is to identify and analysis of situation to describe any risks. It helps in developing better understanding about the risks involved at the workplace. The process is to analyse the daily operations or activities of the organization and the way in which these activities are carried out(NSW, Work Health and Safety Regulation 2017, 2011).
  2. Third step is to evaluate the procedures and policies of the organization in agreement with legislative requirements to adopt a systematic approach for managing WHS. Implement processes that ensure documentation of duties and responsibilities of WHS. Review of processes is required for purchasing, specifications, commissioning, and design of any kind of new project to ensure fulfilling of WHS guidelines(Australian Government, PSPSOHS601A Develop a systematic approach to managing OHS, 2012). Evaluation of procedures will ensure meeting of relevant benchmarks set by WHS. Outcomes of the evaluation are needed to discuss with related stakeholder to check the accuracy and a budget is then allocated for the management of WHS. If an expert advice is require then ask for it to check limits of own expertise (Safework SA, 2014).
  3. Fourth step is the implementation of WHS plan at the workplace. This requires consultation from responsible mangers and determines the priorities. Discussion with managers will help in identifying barriers in WHS plan. With the help of key personnel and various stakeholders, WHS plan is developed(Safework SA, 2014). Identification of resources is important in order to implement the plan effectively.
  4. Fifth and final step of the process is maintenance of the implemented plan or the improvements. This is achieved with developing processes for monitoring the plan and considering the updates according to the requirements. Management of WHS plan is achieved with monitoring of systematic approach’s effectiveness(New Science, 2014). If any consultation is required to maintain improvement plan then key personnel and stakeholders should be consulted which provide guidance according to organization’s procedures and legislative requirements.

Answer 5. In the investigation of Safework, several safety and health breaches were identified at Acci Dent Window Cleaning organization. Therefore, there is need of implementing several changes in the present work health and safety management system (WHSMS) of the organization. Following is the list of those changes:

  • First of all, it has been identified that, currently Acci Dent Window cleaning company does not have any kind of WHS system. It has only an informal safety officer who watches safety measurements(WRLA, 2017). Therefore, first change is including a proper and official Work and Safety procedure in the organization.
  • Second change which is required in Company is providing proper training to its employees about various safety measures and tools. Employees of the organization are lacking in basic knowledge about the WHS procedures and the risks or hazards associated with tasks(Australian Government, HLTWHS601A Improve workplace WHS Processes, 2012). Therefore, a proper training should be provided to the employees to make them know about WHS procedures and related risks.
  • Third thing that need change is the attitude of senior management and supervisors towards its employees. As supervisors does not concerned about the work done by team which is under his supervision. A supervisor should prepare a proper record of the services or work performed by the employees(Worksafe, Guide to the Work Health and Safety Act 2011, 2011). This will help the organization in maintaining WHS plan according to the job requirements.
  • Fourth change in the process of Acci Dent Window Cleaning is the way in which records and communication is carried out in the company. There is need of implementing a new system for maintaining records and communicating(Butler, 2015).
  • Fifth and last change that is necessary to implement in the organization is to identify the risks and hazards associated with the tasks of the company. All the hazards and risks need their proper reviewing at frequent intervals. Also implement procedures and policies and regular improvements according to the requirements of the tasks so that such kind of incidents will not happen again in future(Worksafe, Introduction to Workplace Health and Safety: An Overview, 2018).

Answer 6. As implementing WHS plan in the organization does not guarantee proper safety and health of employees. To ensure complete health and safety of employees, it is important to ensure that the implementation of WHS plan is effectively understood and followed by the employees. To make the effective on-going of improvement plan by the staff is ensured by maintaining the set standards of the WHS management plan (HSE, 2008). The organization should ensure that employees are provided with proper training and briefing about the hazards and risks associated with various tasks before performing any service. A supervisor should have complete and effective recording and reporting of all the services performed by the employees under his supervision. It should be ensured that all the risks that could danger employees’ health and safety should be resolved on priority. This enhances belief of employees in WHS plan and thus would inspire their commitment towards improvement plan. Again, supervisor plays an important role in effective implementation and maintenance of plan as he is responsible for briefing and instructing the plan to the employees and also guiding them with the ways of dealing with risks and difficult situations which involve safety of employees (UOW, 2016).

References

Alford, B. K., Lynch, S., Rosenblum, I., & Kullmann, C. (2015). Creating a Safe and Healthy Workplace. Retrieved from https://www.icohweb.org/site/multimedia/oh-guide/formatted_ohs_guide_v6_2015.pdf

Australian Government. (2012). HLTWHS601A Improve workplace WHS Processes. Retrieved from https://training.gov.au/TrainingComponentFiles/HLT07/HLTWHS601A_R1.pdf

Australian Government. (2012). PSPSOHS601A Develop a systematic approach to managing OHS. Retrieved from https://training.gov.au/TrainingComponentFiles/PSP04/PSPSOHS601A_R1.pdf

Butler, J. (2015). Two Window Cleaners Plunge From High-Rise, Land On Awning in Sydney CBD Accident. Retrieved from https://www.huffingtonpost.com.au/2015/10/20/window-cleaner-fall_n_8334554.html

COS. (2019). External influences motivate firms to improve OHS performance: Study. Retrieved from https://www.cos-mag.com/personal-process-safety/29867-external-influences-motivate-firms-to-improve-ohs-performance-study/

HSA. (2009). Workplace Health and Safety Management. Retrieved from https://www.hsa.ie/eng/Publications_and_Forms/Publications/Safety_and_Health_Management/Workplace_Safety_and_Health_Management.pdf

HSE. (2008). Essentials of Health and Safety at Work. Retrieved from https://www.sh168.org.tw/getRef.ashx?id=174

New Science. (2014). Workplace Health and Safety. Retrieved from https://facilityexecutive.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/safety.pdf

NSW. (2011). Work Health and Safety Regulation 2017. Retrieved from https://www.icare.nsw.gov.au/-/.../health.../work-health-and-safety-regulation-2017.ashx...

NSW. (2017). Easy to do Work Health and Safety. Retrieved from https://www.safework.nsw.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0016/410209/easy-to-do-whs-SW08483.pdf

OSHA. (2019). A safe workplace is sound business. Retrieved from https://www.osha.gov/shpguidelines/

Quinlan, M., Bohle, P., & Lamm, F. (2010). Managing occupational health and safety. Palgrave Macmillan.

RRC. (2019). Organizational Factors. Retrieved from https://www.rrc.co.uk/pdfs/material/NEBOSH%20Diploma%20Courses%20Sample.pdf

Safe Work Australia. (2014). Workplace health and safety, business productivity and sustainability. Retrieved from https://www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/system/files/documents/1702/workplace-health-safety-business-productivity-sustainability.pdf

Safework SA. (2014). Community Workers. Retrieved from https://www.safework.sa.gov.au/sites/default/files/3.20.5-communityworkerswhsguidelines.pdf?v=1524456775

The Guardian. (2015). Two window cleaners survive 12-storey fall from Sydney building. Retrieved from https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2015/oct/20/two-window-cleaners-fall-multiple-stories-from-sydney-building

UOW. (2016). Roles and Responsibilities for WHS. Retrieved from https://staff.uow.edu.au/content/groups/public/@web/@ohs/documents/doc/uow016892.pdf

Worksafe. (2011). Guide to the Work Health and Safety Act 2011. Retrieved from https://www.worksafe.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0006/82545/guide-to-work-health-and-safety-act-2011.pdf

Worksafe. (2018). Introduction to Workplace Health and Safety: An Overview. Retrieved from https://www.worksafeforlife.ca/Portals/WorkSafeForLifeRedesign/Documents/Introduction%20to%20Workplace%20Health%20and%20Safety_An%20Overview.pdf?ver=2017-03-29-152040-200

WRLA. (2017). Occupational Health and Safety. Retrieved from https://www.wrla.org/sites/wrla_01/files/health_and_safety_manual_sample.pdf

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