If we look at the official data for non-fatal accidents at work in the EU, the statistic will show us graphs that either go up or down. Going up means more accidents at work while going down means the opposite. More accidents mean more expenses. So the reasonable question here for regulators and private enterprises subject to regulations is: how to control the rate of work accidents and keep it down? The indirect answer is: by optimising the safety inspection program of the organisation. You’ll find the more direct answer, one that tells exactly how to do that, below.
The primary purpose of optimising the safety inspection programs is to ensure:
- Worker’s safety
Keeping the workforce safe ensures the long-term stability of the company’s worker retention program
2. Good reputation
An organisation with a low rate of work accidents has a good reputation. It’s an advantage and should be recognised as such.
3. No disruption of operations
The safety of the work environment improves productivity and reduces the disruption of operations. Avoiding disruptions helps the company keep their work on a budget.
4. No fines by regulators
Regulations are being updated regularly. That’s why it’s essential to use an inspection solution that ensures that rules are being followed in an up to date manner because fines may seriously sidetrack the company’s plan.
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- reducing the scheduling time with up to 75%
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A good safety inspection program may be divided into three components:
- The inspection planning and scheduling component need constant optimising because a good plan can improve resource utilisation and prevent mistakes.
- The inspection execution component is the part that can significantly improve the speed and quality of inspections. The use of technology can transform the work of inspectors by allowing them to use pre-defined inspection checklists or benefit from an entirely digital document management system. The digital infrastructure of the inspection management process can remove the manual work that often slows down inspectors.
- The digital infrastructure allows inspectors to gain better visibility on inspection outcomes and therefore recommend relevant actions and training to the workers to reduce the risk of accidents in the workplace.
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The importance of digitising the safety inspection checklists
What’s the best way for an inspector to identify risks during safety inspection? Answer: by following a checklist. When everything’s written down on a list, the inspector has a better chance to cover all of the potential risks. The process can be improved even more with a digital inspection management system. When regulatory bodies adopt software solutions for safety inspections, the pre-defined checklists can be easily implemented into the work process of inspectors. For different types of safety inspections, there can be configured specific checklists.
If we step out of the regulatory inspections field and look at the general impact of checklists, we’ll see a double confirmation about their benefits. A lot of research points out that checklists help experts execute their projects more efficiently. In an essential field like safety inspections, the power of checklists must be utilised to ensure the well-being of workers and the community.
Checklists remind us of the minimum necessary steps and make them explicit. They offer the possibility of verification and instil a kind of discipline of higher performance.
Why must a safety inspection software have configurable checklists?
Safety inspections are complex, so high configuration must be a part of the requirements of any inspection management solution. A good configurable inspection software will allow regulatory agencies to configure specific checklists for each type of safety inspection – safety inspections for tools and equipment, electrical concerns, scaffolding, etc. Checklists are a very overlooked component in inspection programs. Their function is a gamechanger when it comes to data gathering. Because only detailed and correctly gathered data may generate a valuable inspection report.
The importance of optimising safety inspection reports
The outcome of a safety inspection ends in a report. The report aims to recommend corrective actions to reduce the risks of hazards in the future. However, a report may not be efficient if the best practices aren’t followed.
The benefits that safety inspection reports bring are:
- Capturing error-free inspection data
A good inspection checklist is key to gathering sufficient error-free data that can be exported into an inspection report.
2. Real-time documenting of inspections
Recording inspections in real-time allows inspectors to capture their observations fully. Performing field inspections with a tablet will enable them to capture images in the meantime and attach them to the reporting file. The image can make feedback clear.
3. Complete visibility over inspection data
The digital gathering of inspection data allows inspectors to have better visibility over the inspected subjects. The leverage on data can make inspections more risk-focused and help mitigate risks and improve overall compliance.
4. Make safety inspection reports readable.
Big words and complex sentences have no place in inspection reports. Reports must be understandable and clear. No unreadable handwriting! Automating the generation of inspection reports based on the gathered data and collected observations can ensure the readability of the information.
How to find the right safety inspection software?
The choice of inspection management system depends on the organisation’s strategy. If a government agency follows a cloud-first strategy, its focus must be on cloud inspection services. If the organisation is focused on health and food safety, they should aim at a solution specialising in this sector. The same applies to enterprises that want to transform their internal inspections and audits.
Two rules for preparing safety inspection research:
- Find something that will answer your goals – cloud-based solution or on-premise solution?
- Find something that will be an excellent fit for your use case – general safety inspections, food safety inspections, environmental inspections, etc.
Prepare a list of requirements and start your research. Then reach out to potential suppliers and book a Product tour or a Demo session that can highlight the features that can provide the execution of the best practices we described above. The next reasonable step would be to order a proof of concept.