2021 HSE & CSR Workshop

The IPLOCA HSE/CSR Workshop took place in Athens, Greece on Tuesday, 26 October, in conjunction with the Novel Construction Fall Session on Wednesday and Thursday, 27-28 October 2021.

We would like to thank the delegates from 30 different companies for their active participation and collaboration during the productive discussions on new advances in safety on the construction site. Topics for the full day program included “Next Generation Safety Measurement”, “3-Second Safety: An Energy-based Hazard ID Program” and “Fit For Duty: Fatigue Management”.

During the seminar, participants had the opportunity to share their safety leadership practices and experiences. They also further reinforced their safety leadership capabilities and commitments to prevent incidents & injuries and learn how to manage the risk of fatigue at multiple levels of our organizations.

During the afternoon workshop, the face-to-face and virtual attendees separated into four breakout rooms to dig deeper into the science and data of managing the risk from a fatigued workforce.
The teams concentrated on learning and sharing best practices related to:

  • Managing The Clock: How does our industry help or hinder our employees’ opportunity to collect enough sleep to maintain alertness?
  • Managing People: How do we know if our employees are using the opportunity to collect sleep?
  • Managing Performance: How are cultural stigmas around fatigue impacting our company’s performance?
  • Managing Processes: How can fatigue management be integrated into our current safety management systems?

The breakout rooms include a broad cross-section of IPLOCA regular and associate membership as well as Subject Matter Experts from Caterpillar on the topic of Fatigue Risk Management.
The room’s moderator challenged the teams to discuss best practices and to engage the SMEs to dig deeper into local and regional risks and opportunities to manage the risks of fatigue.  Ultimately, the workshop emphasized the importance of understanding and determining our ability, and our workforce’s ability, to become “fit for duty”.

Nearly 100 ideas were generated during the afternoon workshop and were narrowed to the following issues. The 11 issues include:

  • No metrics are available for employee fatigue / team sleep. Clear metrics are not universally available, accepted or defined.
  • No clear definition of fatigue exists. We do not have a common explanation and definition of what constitutes employee fatigue.
  • Construction and crew work schedules vary and may be uncontrollable. Variations in work schedules challenge the ability to fully rest.
  • Change management / training is needed to understand the risk of a fatigued workforce. Leadership needs to understand the impact to crews (and project performance) from a fatigued workforce.
  • Employee recognition is needed. Recognition for exhibiting a desired behavior is a powerful tool for leaders to wield by showing employees the personal value in changing their behavior.
  • Operating company/contractor work schedule alignment is needed as divergent demands risks workforce overload. Workloads change and need to be managed. However, clear discussions and alignment between operating companies and contractors should include the needs for workforce rest.
  • Crews require workload balance management. Leadership needs to consider crew workload balance during work and scheduling of rest.
  • The impact to a company financial performance due to fatigue Is unknown. The workshop attendees agree fatigue directly impacts a company and project performance. However, the risks and impacts are not well understood or calculated.
  • The cultural stigma of fatigue needs to change. We can no longer encourage a “get it done” mentality.
  • Employee training/responsibility awareness is needed. Little to no training is currently provided to help us understand our own risks from fatigue and our responsibilities to manage fatigue.
  • Fatigue risk management should be part of safety management systems. Safety professionals do not normally include fatigue risk management as part of a SMS program

While more work is needed and underway, the team then took actions to identify high level, draft ideas for possible short-, medium- and long-term strategic actions to reduce the risk of a fatigued workforce within multiple levels of the organization.

The top eight action items include:

  • Engage employees in creating fatigue management processes/programs. Create employee buy-in by engaging them in developing training to understand the risks to them and the project of not getting enough rest.
  • Review employee benefits. Ensure employees are engaged in managing their rest cycles to provide maximum on-the-job performance.
  • Create metrics on team member rest and performance. Cleary define and measure employee rest requirements and performance.
  • Culture change is needed. Not allowing employees to get adequate rest because of operational schedule/objectives is not accepted as a business principle. Focus is needed on the company’s proactive management of fatigue.
  • Work schedule alignment needed between contractors and operating companies. Set clear alignment throughout the project cycle on workforce workload and scheduling to manage fatigue risk.
  • Study impact of fatigued employee performance on project / business performance. Review current literature and science on the risk and financial impact to project and corporate performance from a fatigued workforce. Select pilot companies from IPLOCA membership.
  • Include fatigue risk management plans in Safety Management System / Safety KPIs. Recommend IPLOCA safety professionals consider adding fatigue risk management procedures to the SMS and Safety KPIs. IPLOCA membership will develop recommended best practices as a result of this workshop.
  • Launch fatigue risk management best practices using the outcome of the 26 Oct 2021 HSE Fatigue Risk Management workshop. IPLOCA membership to research and recommend best practices to manage fatigue risk as an outcome of this workshop.Outcome to be shared with broader membership to incorporate into SMS and Safety KPIs where appropriate.

More work is underway to better develop these issues and action descriptions and will be shared in upcoming materials to the IPLOCA membership.

Below are presentations and materials displayed during the session: