In coming months changes are in process at Coates Hire branches and locations across the country.
Those changes are already under way with a team of safety experts from DuPont Australia looking at where Coates Hire stands today in terms of its safety journey.
DuPont works from a standpoint that all accidents are preventable and the company has operated under the ‘safety first’ motto since it began more than 200 years ago.
Today, DuPont continues to be regarded as a world leader in employee and workplace safety and its consultants have provided safety training and consulting services to thousands of diverse organisations across the globe.
Currently its consultants are shining the safety spotlight on Coates Hire and as part of DuPont’s work with the company the Coates Hire HSEQ team will ensure the sustainability of safety strategies that are put in place.
Martine Briers, Group Manager HSEQ at Coates Hire, says the work with DuPont is about embedding an enhanced safety strategy across Coates Hire.
“Strength and leadership translate to best safety practice. We want to integrate safety and make sure that it is appreciated throughout the company,” Briers says.
“We want to go from a compliance and rules perspective to a complete engagement of people who are committed to safety, who are involved, and who understand their responsibility and accountability with regards to safety.”
DuPont consultants will work with the CEO, Executive Leadership Team, Coates Hire Leadership Team and frontline leaders who will take part in a safety leadership program.
Briers says this is about ‘training the trainers’ and encouraging people to follow their leader. “That ensures sustainability so this program becomes ingrained in the company. Being a leader means you are always an example of good safety behaviours, and it’s about stepping up when you see something unsafe and addressing it there and then,” she says.
“Safety is not something sitting on the sidelines. It’s a journey that everyone in the company is part of.”
The DuPont program began in September and has been looking at where Coates Hire is today in terms of safety practice, analysing safety indicators and data, and interviewing people throughout the company.
These surveys will be used to discover the company’s strengths, what is done well and to identify any weaknesses and barriers that can be improved upon. On this basis a detailed program is currently being compiled.
“The Executive Leadership Team will deliver the same safety messages throughout the company and from there they go to the Coates Hire Leadership Team and frontline managers who will all be coached by DuPont consultants,” Briers says.
“The outcome is to have strong leadership in safety so at all times when our team or customers enter any of our premises they know their employees will be safe and they know they will also be safe when working with our equipment because our commitment to safety as a company is very high.
“Best practice safety will be the norm for us — unsafe acts will not be accepted. It’s like years ago when seatbelts were first introduced. Today, the social norm is to wear a seatbelt and it’s abnormal not to wear one. The norm will be working safely — and that benefits every single person.”