Job site safety is a paramount concern in the construction industry. At SW Funk Industrial Contractors, we face various challenges in ensuring the well-being of our employees. To help combat safety issues, we have established systems and protocols to ensure that our team is always protected while accidents are foreseen and avoided.
Training as the Cornerstone
One of the most substantial safety concerns for us is training. Ensuring that all our employees are properly trained and prepared is of utmost importance. By providing proper training, we not only prevent accidents but also properly adhere to the strictest industry standards and regulations. The company mandates its employees to earn certifications such as OSHA 10, a standard certification in the construction industry.
OSHA 10 is a fundamental requirement, but SW Funk Industrial Contractors goes the extra mile by offering specialized industrial training. The additional training focuses on industrial contracting and covers areas relevant to us, such as:
- Specific equipment handling
- Dealing with chemicals
- Emergency preparedness
This comprehensive approach helps safeguard our employees and ensures they are well-prepared for the unique challenges of industrial construction sites.
New Hires and Safety
New hires, not just within SW Funk Industrial Contractors but industry-wide, are particularly susceptible to injuries. It’s concerning that within their first week on the job, many new employees experience work-related injuries. This underscores the critical need for robust training programs that instill a strong safety culture from the very beginning of an employee’s tenure.
This, in turn, starts a knowledge-transfer cycle, where employees throughout the years are gaining experience in the safety programs, and later pass it on to their new team members.
SW Funk Industrial Contractors has a designated in-house trainer who plays a pivotal role in shaping the company’s safety culture. The trainer’s primary focus is to ensure that the entire workforce receives the necessary training and certifications. Moreover, they work on customizing training, creating videos, and making content tailored to our relevant industrial environment so they can meet the specific needs of our company.
For example, when a special piece of equipment is involved in a project, we conduct orientation sessions to prepare the employees for the challenges they may face. This type of customized training goes beyond what OSHA 10 offers and is a testament to the company’s commitment to safety.
Competitive Advantage Through Verification
SW Funk’s commitment to safety not only protects its employees but also provides a competitive edge. Many clients have experienced issues with verifying their contractors’ training records. In cases of incidents or accidents, inadequate training documentation can expose clients to extra costs, legal ramifications, and liabilities.
We use ISNetworld to verify our employees’ training. This way, we make sure that our clients have peace of mind, knowing that workers on their sites are adequately trained. This verification not only safeguards the client’s interests but also contributes to SW Funk Industrial Contractors’ reputation as a reliable and safety-conscious contractor.
A Culture of Safety
Investing in safety protocols may appear to be an added expense, but in reality, it saves clients money and hassle in the long run. Injuries on the job can significantly slow down a project’s progress, leading to delays and additional costs.
While it is challenging to quantify the exact financial impact of safety lapses, it’s clear that tens of thousands of dollars can be lost for every day a project is delayed.
SW Funk Industrial Contractors’ culture of safety is embodied by its large safety staff, which includes a Safety Manager, Safety Coordinator and multiple field representatives. This comprehensive safety team ensures that all employees are well-informed about safety protocols and that the company meets and exceeds industry standards.
Our dedication to training, especially when it comes to new hires, sets a high benchmark in the industry. Our strategy treats all employees as if they’ve never received any training, emphasizing the importance of constant learning and improvement.
At SW Funk Industrial Contractors, we maintain a “zero goal” when it comes to safety, aspiring for an incident-free workplace. Additionally, the Total Recordable Incident Rate (TRIR) is consistently well below the industry standards, as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
Safety Management and Learning Systems
SW Funk Industrial Contractors employs a Safety Management System (SMS) that documents safety programs and creates Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for specific safety-related work processes. These SOPs define safe work practices and go beyond OSHA requirements, ensuring that the company maintains high safety standards.
The Learning Management System (LMS) is a tangible tool that complements the SMS. It contains training documents, videos and instructions to teach employees based on the SMS’s guidelines. We combine in-person training and online video training, creating a comprehensive approach to employee development. We want to provide our teams with as much information and materials as possible.
The company also conducts OSHA-required health physicals in order to meet all medical requirements, ensuring that employees are fit for the demanding tasks they undertake on a daily basis.
The safety of our employees is the most critical aspect of SW Funk Industrial Contractors’ operations and should be a priority for any company, not just in the building materials and construction segment, but in the overall industry.
By investing in comprehensive training, verification systems and a strong safety culture, we not only safeguard our employees but also provide a competitive advantage and cost-saving benefits for our clients. In an industry where safety is paramount, we stand out as a leader in ensuring the well-being of our workforce and the success of our projects.
If you want to learn more about our safety initiatives and dedication to our employees’ protection, contact us today — we’d love to chat with you!