Our people operate in a high-risk environment and their safety, as well as the safety of our partners and customers, is one of our core values.
We are uncompromising in our commitment to continually developing our safety culture to the point where our people consistently make the right health, safety and wellbeing decisions, not because they are told to, but because it is the right thing to do. Although we have made significant inroads into our safety performance in recent years, there are still people getting hurt, and we need to do more.
In response to this, we have launched a breakthrough initiative that will overhaul the safety culture at HW Martin (Traffic Management). What began as an intention to create a safer workplace, where we all look out for one another, has evolved into Bringing Safety Home. This is our overarching mission to ensure everyone goes home safe, happy and healthy at the end of each day.
You can watch a short video about our health and safety culture here.
To achieve our overarching mission, we have introduced Safe by Choice our bespoke behavioural safety campaign delivered in partnership with JMJ Associates.
Safe by Choice is a company-wide commitment that we are asking every individual, at every level of the organisation, to make. Its roll-out is the foundation of our new safety culture upon which Bringing Safety Home will be realised.
Safe by Choice will ensure that our people are empowered with the awareness and knowledge needed to make safer, more informed choices; make their voices heard; and, take full responsibility for their own health, safety and wellbeing.
Our Partnership with JMJ Associates
At HW Martin (Traffic Management) we consider ourselves to be traffic management experts, and this is why our clients choose us.
For the same reason, we have enlisted the help of the behavioural safety and change management experts at JMJ Associates to help us on our Safe by Choice journey and realise our broader ambition of Bringing Safety Home.
JMJ have worked with the likes of Skanska, Balfour Beatty, Maersk and Shell, supporting them in achieving tangible and sustainable safety performance results, including:
- A decrease in accidents and fatalities
- Project performance on time and to schedule
- Team alignment, morale boost and increased collaboration
To build and sustain an industry-leading behavioural safety culture that can be felt reverberating throughout our organisation by our people, clients, partners and stakeholders; an evolution in ‘the way we do things; that is visible to all.
To generate a measurable, tangible and ultimately sustainable step change in our safety culture and performance that becomes a natural part of the way we do business.
To develop our people, giving them the skills that will enable them to take responsibility for, and ownership of, their safety and the safety of their colleagues; ensuring they have an understanding of what Safe by Choice means for them, and the part they play in influencing others to take care.
To empower Safe by Choice Influencers and Trainers from within our own workforce who will become our in-house experts using market-leading techniques to facilitate, demonstrate and lead the safety culture we want to see; cascading our safety message throughout the workforce.
To facilitate constructive conversations and interactions between management and front-line workers that promote the right kind of safety behaviours, demonstrate leadership, boost morale on site and result in safety performance improvements.
To gain coaching, leadership, and continuous feedback from JMJ to ensure we embed our Safe by Choice safety culture effectively.
What is Safe by Choice?
Safe by Choice is our organisational and personal commitment to health, safety and wellbeing.
It is our bespoke behavioural safety programme – the implementation of which will help us to transform our safety culture from the ground up. This is what we need to build together to achieve our overarching mission of Bringing Safety Home.
The programme places value on our people showing care and concern for one another, and prioritising their own safety and wellbeing. It encourages us to celebrate these moments, listen better to one another and ensure everyone feels heard and appreciated. We will acknowledge the behaviours we want more of and promote a heightened awareness and ownership of care and consideration across the board.
Safe by Choice is a crucial part of Bringing Safety Home. That is our mission to ensure that our people, partners, customers and stakeholders go home safe, happy and healthy every day.
Our Safety Culture
Our safety culture is not dictated by management; rather it is shaped by the choices we all make every day. Together we have the power to define what our safety culture should be.
Our safety culture is: being Safe by Choice
This is a culture where we make safer decisions not because someone has told us to, but because it is the right thing to do. A culture where we all support the development of a safe, injury-free environment.
To help us evolve our safety culture we ask our people to embrace the following statement in everything they do: Safety is led by everyone from everywhere.
Everything is better when we work together
The whole is greater than the sum of its parts. By working together, talking more and listening more we can help each other, be vigilant, and ensure we all go home safe, happy and healthy at the end of the day.
Leaders at Every Level
Everyone has a leadership role to play in this journey. We all have a valid voice to raise a safety concern, or to praise a colleague when they have done a good job. And we can all be open to guidance, advice and feedback in order to improve our safety behaviours.
Ultimately, we believe that we all have the power to influence someone else and bring about a change in our safety culture
Our leadership provide direction and guidance, and embed a progressive behavioural safety culture across the organisation.
Our senior managers lead by example, promoting and driving our progressive behavioural safety culture.
Our foremen and supervisors embody, through empowerment, the values at the core of our behavioural safety culture as workforce leaders.
Our operatives increase their own personal responsibility through equal empowerment to speak up and take ownership.
Our supply chain partners are empowered and integrated into our approach to ensure the alignment of a strong health and safety culture across the board.
Our Five Golden Rules for being Safe by Choice
- Be personally accountable for your safety and that of others
- Be fit, well and prepared for work (both you, and your vehicle)
- Always receive a briefing before starting work
- Stop and escalate if you feel unsafe
- Report ALL unsafe events
Nothing is more important than safety and I give you my direct authority to stop any activity that cannot be carried out safely – Harold Martin, Executive Chairman
From the top down, we are committed to putting the health, safety and wellbeing of our people first. We pledge that:
- If you stop a task for safety reasons, we will back you up.
- If you raise a safety concern, we will address it promptly.
- If there is an injury, we will investigate the incident in a way that does not give rise to blame.
- Any investigations will focus on learning so that we can eliminate the next injury.
- We will provide a culture of regular safety engagement and interaction with everyone from everywhere.
Mental health & wellbeing – breaking the silence
A key part of our approach to health, safety and wellbeing is to prioritise health in the same way we do safety and treat it with the same level of respect.
To support our people, we promote good mental health practices and procedures; encouraging our employees to talk about how they feel without fear of judgement or reprisal. We seek to educate our staff about mental ill health in order to tackle the associated stigma and champion a culture of positive well-being, empathy and kindness. This is our award-winning breaking the silence campaign.
We want to promote more mindful habits, and proactively support our people currently experiencing mental ill health.
The initiatives we have in place are:
- We provide a comprehensive, holistic Employee Assistance Programme free of charge to our employees to support them with their physical and mental wellbeing.
- We proactively train mental health first aiders to provide support and crisis intervention
- We have a team of empowered regional mental health champions who promote the message of good mental health for all
- We launched the ‘Is Your Mate Safe?’ hotline
- New starter mental health checks with our Occupational Health specialists are standard practice
- A wellbeing risk assessment is incorporated into our Occupational Health System
- We have a programme of ongoing health screenings for all staff including Raising the Bar 12 compliant Safety Critical Medicals
Safety is a crucial focal point of our research and innovation. Here are some of the safety-focused innovations we are working on to make highways safer for everyone:
- We have been part of the Highways Safety Hub since its inception supporting the ‘Raising the Bar’ initiative by identifying health and safety best practice and defining the minimum requirements for construction and maintenance sites
- We are road-testing an automated cone laying vehicle to eliminate the need for our front-line teams to lift and drop nearly 10 tonnes of cones every shift on a live highway
- There are 175 incidents of unauthorised vehicles entering roadworks on average every month. We have embraced Raising the Bar 27 and are leading a programme of digital automation to reduce incursions in the highways industry
- We are leading the way in Stopped Vehicle Detection systems utilising the latest radar and AI technology to identify stopped vehicles and coordinate a recovery response within 15 seconds