Health and safety incentive program is a reward structure for a job Weldon. Over the years, giving out incentives have been a major approach to encourage continuous service delivery, but it is not without disadvantages. If the incentive program is not well handled, it may lead to a complete breakdown of the system that is already in place.
This is why this article is very important to anyone / any organization who has adopted or planning to adopt the health and safety incentive program to foster occupational health and safety in the workplace.
Advantages of the health and safety incentive program
- It encourages compliance
- It motivates the workers
- It enhance productivity
- It helps organization meet organizations best practice
- Helps organization meets occupational health and safety targets.
- It will improve the safety culture generally if done right
- It will encourages participation of the workers, leading better compliance and commitment.
Disadvantages of the health and safety incentive program
- It can lead to a total breakdown of the health and safety structure if not well managed.
- Can cause internal conflict where some workers/sections feel’s cheated and un-recognized.
- It can lead to poor report metrics in the workplace. Workers/group may withdraw from reporting incidents in the workplace.
- It can result to loss of the clear picture of the state of the occupational health and safety system in the workplace.
- There may be outright rejection of the system
How to setup the best health and safety incentive program
To set up a viable health and safety incentive program, there are things you must do, and there are things you must avoid.
- Let everyone; individuals, groups and sections, understand the basis for the incentives – Communicate.
- Encourage workers participation when setting up the incentive program structure, by so doing; they will have a feeling of ownership of the system.
- Do not set up a policing system where every worker is expected to report unsafe acts and behaviours of their colleagues. This may cause internal conflict among workers; especially when culprits are being punished. At the long run, this may dissuade workers from reporting unsafe acts and conditions.
- Place workers, group or section’s representative in the decision making body deciding who, which section or group is due for the award. This will uphold the fidelity of the system.
- Do not use lagging indicators as a benchmark to choose who is qualified for the award. This will provide little to no value to managing the day to day behaviours and risks in the workplace.
- Do not use outcomes – Like LTI free manhour, as a baseline for qualification for the health and safety incentive program.
Why behavioural based safety is best in health and safety incentive program
I believe that behavioural safety is best for the health and safety incentive program as it is concern with behavioural change. It creates a safety partnership between management and workers that continually focus peoples attention and actions on their daily safety behaviours and that of others.
Base on this, I really believe the health and safety incentive program should be based exclusively on daily positive behavior; this will supports the safety raffle (A form of health and safety incentive).
How the safety raffle works: Supervisors are given a positive behaviour ticket by the management; they are to fill out this ticket in favour of any worker met exhibiting good safety behavior at any point within the award time scale. This tickets are thereafter submitted to the management for monthly raffle draw or any how the award is planned.
After the raffle draw, the winner will go home with the star prize, with others top performers receiving consolation prizes.
NOTE: Since, the more good performance ticket filled in a workers favour, the more his chance of winning the star prize, the workers will strive to perform better always, leading to improved safety compliance.
The safety raffle can also be localized within groups or sections.
This is my candid opinion, I will love to hear from you.
Please questions, contributions and constructive criticism are welcome.
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