A step change in Health and Safety

John Sisk & Son is the leading building contractor in Ireland and has regional offices in the UK. Band London were appointed in 2010 to help the company achieve a step change in Health and Safety.

The process started with understanding where the organisation truly stood and its core beliefs and practices. The Band team carried out a rigorous programme of site visits and interviews with directors, site managers, operatives, supervisors, sub contractors, safety officers and clients. Band then went about challenging existing beliefs and achieving a step change in attitudes to safety. These new beliefs were then aligned with new working practices and a radical overhaul of inductions, site set-ups, signage, traffic management, interfaces with local communities and the public and the way sites were managed. This brought about a major change in the way responsibility for Health and Safety was shared amongst the leadership and site management.

As a result of this initial research Band were able to conduct a series of workshops which resulted in fundamental changes to:

• The roles and responsibilities of safety supervisors and advisors

• The sharing of responsibility for Health and Safety

• The way sites were set up and managed

• Inductions

• The ‘rules of engagement’ for sub contractors

• Site signage and accommodation

• Reporting, investigation and learning from accidents and near misses

• Internal communications and the Sisk company and Group websites

• Quality management

The results were impressive: As well as a rapid decline in Accident Frequency Rates, a number of major clients sought advice from Sisk on their own Health and Safety management and Sisk were regularly the preferred contractor amongst high tech, pharmaceutical, power, infrastructure and government clients. John Sisk & Son moved from needing to re-assure clients that they were satisfactory in Health & Safety to being recognised as exemplary in the field and positively preferred by major clients.

During the two year programme to overhaul every facet of Health and Safety it became clear to Band and the client leadership team that there was a direct link between the rigorous management of safety and the minimisation of snags and defects – effectively, well run, safe projects also enjoyed higher quality. This resulted in a broader campaign called ‘Zero’ – ‘Zero Incidents and Injuries’ and ‘Zero Snags and Defects’. A visit to any Sisk site today is a revelation. The results have been outstanding and the company has fully embraced and implemented the entire programme.


Work undertaken

  • Research and audit of existing practices
  • Moderated workshops
  • Internal change programme
  • Complete site signage programme
  • Site set-up manual
  • Induction films
  • On site posters and communications
  • Quality Manual
  • Company conference event
  • Construction website
  • Group website
  • Photography

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