Totika - Behind the Question - Event Reporting, Recording, and Investigation

27 November 2020

Prequalification – Behind the Question

In this series, our Moderators dissect the questions within the Totika prequalification scheme, what's best practice? What's the requirement?

In this weeks edition, we look at another question in the Event Reporting, Recording, and Investigation module.

"The organisation shall demonstrate that they follow-up from investigations with corrective actions, record the findings, and communicate what has been learned to their Workers."

There are many differing methodologies for investigating incidents, and arguably the most important result of any incident investigation is how do we prevent this from occurring again? When reading the Totika requirement, it can be broken down into three separate sections;

  • Following up Investigations with corrective actions
  • Recording the findings of those investigations
  • Communicating what has been learned from the incident investigation to the workforce.

Demonstration of Process?

Regardless of the size of your business, you must be able to demonstrate a form of incident investigation process. What this entails will entirely depend on the size and scope of your business. Whereas a large corporation may have an in-depth Incident reporting and investigation policy, based on a methodology such as ICAM or Taproot, smaller businesses may only have a rudimentary process in place, or maybe even a checklist such as that found on the WorkSafe website here in New Zealand. Either is perfectly acceptable relative to the size and risk levels involved in your business. This requirement is also presented in several related questions under the Totika standard, so ensuring a process is in place is essential to ensure a positive Totika result.

Corrective Actions?

Totika asks for evidence that corrective actions from investigations are identified, recorded and tracked to completion. Corrective Actions can be tracked via a corrective action register or similar. Larger businesses may even have an electronic safety management system such as Assura which may track all of this by default.

Key to this is that the register records, the action, the person responsible, current status, and evidence that the action has been completed (photo, a signature of completion or similar).

Communications?

Effective Communications is a key requirement of effective, inclusive safety, ensuring that your workers are kept updated in what is essentially a modern-day work environment where the risk landscape is constantly changing. A well-used method of communicating findings is via safety bulletins or safety alerts. Other methods may include dissemination through a Health and Safety Committee, or even during a shift prestart or huddle. Whatever works most effectively for your business is going to be the best solution.

What else can I do?

A common area often overlooked by businesses, large and small, is the reviewing of corrective actions to test their effectiveness over time. A comprehensive corrective action and even risk register will have dates included in their respective systems to ensure that the controls put in place to prevent an identified risk from reoccurring are reviewed over time to test their effectiveness.

Each week the Qualify365 Team will dissect a question from the Totika Standard, to give you an insight into what it is we are looking for as auditors for your next prequalification.

Do you have a question about the Totika Standard? Are you looking for a prequalification process that adds value to your business? We are here to help,

Safe365 works with businesses to achieve occupational health and safety success. Read more about our work here.

 

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