Geared up for the challenge
Geared up for the challenge
Organisations often grapple with resource constraints and the lack of expertise to carry out in-depth and complex accident/incident investigations. An aversion to change and a blaming culture also hinder effective incident analysis, but all hope isn’t lost.
Leon van der Walt, MD of fully-fledged health and safety service provider Makrosafe, highlights that many challenges plague organisations in their pursuit of effective accident/incident investigations.
Resource constraints may leave organisations strapped for time, manpower, or budget to conduct robust investigations, leading to cursory or incomplete analyses.
Lack of expertise may cause errors in understanding.
Inadequate training in the nuances of investigative methodologies may lead to ineffective preventive actions.
Fear of blame and retaliation can deter employees from reporting incidents, hindering accurate data collection.
Organisational culture that prioritises output over safety often resists extensive investigations.
Data from incomplete reporting systems may lack accuracy, complicating root cause analysis.
Proper documentation is crucial to understanding the sequence of events and root causes.
A blame-centric approach fosters fear and deters transparent reporting.
Miscommunication can disrupt investigations and subsequent action plans.
Investigating complex incidents can be daunting without a structured approach.
Preventive measures might be met with resistance to change from various stakeholders.
“It’s not all doom and gloom, however. Over the years accident/incident investigation practices have witnessed profound shifts,” Van der Walt points out. “The focus on the interplay of human dynamics and system-oriented thinking in accident probes has gained momentum, underlining the intricate mesh of human, systemic, and environmental factors often culminating in mishaps.” He adds that the emphasis has shifted from just identifying what happened to understanding why it happened, delving deeper into organisational cultures, perceptions, and shared values, which are significant in shaping behaviours that can lead to accidents.
Makrosafe, in partnership with SafetyWallet, can help organisations facing investigation challenges. “There’s been a surge in leveraging technological tools for data assimilation and analysis, enabling investigators to discern otherwise elusive patterns. It is here that SafetyWallet’s approach shines,” Van der Walt points out. SafetyWallet offers its Triple P system (policies, procedures, and practices): a roadmap to mitigate safety risks effectively. “It streamlines safety responsibilities, making them transparent and actionable. The unique SafetyWallet Mindset Evolution Schema also offers a robust framework for managing change and shifting attitudes. It’s not just about evading accidents; it’s about building a culture where safety is valued and practised instinctively,” notes Van der Walt.
The partnership is exemplified by the Makrosafe Incident Root Cause Analysis (MIRCA) tool, which epitomises the dedication to delve deep into incidents to decipher and address underlying causes and behavioural patterns. “The collaboration of SafetyWallet and MIRCA presents an amalgamation of comprehensive accident analysis and proactive, behaviour-based strategies. This ensures lessons learnt from one incident are embedded in the organisational culture, reducing the chances of recurrence and shifting the focus from mere compliance to genuine safety commitment,” he adds, noting that the duo’s services extend beyond conventional safety protocols. “We invest in training and development, ensuring that the human element of safety is not overlooked. With the emphasis on fostering a safety-first mindset and shaping perceptions, we believe in the power of proactive safety measures that permeate every layer of an organisation. With over two decades in the industry and our forward-thinking alliance with SafetyWallet, we assure employers of holistic, avant-garde support that meets today’s challenges head-on while also gearing up for the future’s demands.”