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Ballard-Sheriff30666  
#1 Posted : 15 April 2019 10:23:32(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
Ballard-Sheriff30666

My new employer has an agressive growth plan with a view to double in size within the next 12months and they have asked me to review the effect on H&S policies and procedures once we hit 500 employees and >£50m turnover.

My initial instinct is that (other than the 5 people) there are no other thresholds with safey and therefore there are no additional obligations as we grow, but it is more important than ever to make sure the foundations of our H&S practices are sound and robust. 

However, this is new territory for me having worked for a much smaller company previously, and therefore I would appreciate any thoughts and advice from those with more experience of this, hence the post.

Thanks in advance for any help 

Ian Bell2  
#2 Posted : 15 April 2019 10:29:48(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Ian Bell2

You are correct, there is really only the 1 legal threshold at 5 people.

However in practice your own procedures should be capable of expanding to allow for the increased numbers.

No idea what you do as a company - but say, take the example of DSE assessments, for low numbers of people one person might be capable of reviewing each persons comments/requirement. But would you really want to review many hundreds of DSE assessments?

The same principal could also apply to CoSHH assessments, manual handling assessments etc.

Sounds like you will need to expand your management structure, to include delegation and responsibility for acting on risk assessment findings etc.

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Kim Hedges on 24/04/2019(UTC)
A Kurdziel  
#3 Posted : 15 April 2019 10:36:33(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
A Kurdziel

One thing that you need to think about when you scale up the business is comms: how you communicate across the various departments. In a small organisation you are all close together and can talk to each other directly and informally. As the organisation gets bigger it becomes necessary for the systems to become more formal and this might lead to silo thinking ie each department focusing on their thing and important issues which were dealt with informally being left out. I am talking about things like who maintains which bits of kit.  What counts as fabric of the building as opposed to building services? You need to keep a handle on it or you will find that they might be missed.

 

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Kim Hedges on 19/04/2019(UTC)
UncleFester  
#4 Posted : 15 April 2019 10:42:07(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
UncleFester

It may be worth highlighting to management that since 2016 turnover is a consideration when calculating H&S fines and the business may be considered to be of medium size at the level of turnover expected.

CptBeaky  
#5 Posted : 15 April 2019 10:45:10(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
CptBeaky

Don't forget to scale you 1st aid facilities as you expand too. A simple first aid kit tucked away in a cupboard for a small office is not going to cut it for an entire office block.

It would help if we had an idea what sort of industry we are looking at. For example, if this a manufacturing company you will probably need to think about what sort of safety training the supervisors/managers will need to ensure the message is communicated effectively. For a warehouse operation it may be necessary to look at larger pedestrian walkways to effectively and safely move the workforce about. And so on..

chris42  
#6 Posted : 15 April 2019 11:01:52(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
chris42

Obviously, welfare facilities need to expand in relation to the number of people. Possibly larger H&S department depending on if it is just more of the same or new ventures.

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Kim Hedges on 19/04/2019(UTC)
Ballard-Sheriff30666  
#7 Posted : 15 April 2019 15:58:13(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
Ballard-Sheriff30666

Thank you all for such quick and helpful responses!

We are in the fire protection industry (suppression and detection) so have management functions (design & project management) and admin (customer service, finance etc) functions in 5 offices and then maintenance and installation work across several hundred sites across all business sectors; so a wide variety of things to consider!! 

AcornsConsult  
#8 Posted : 18 April 2019 07:11:12(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
AcornsConsult

Other departments will, presumably, be asked a similar question - how will admin, stores, training etc expand. Within those, they will also be thinking about how they deal with their current H&S. You won’t be alone, Icd look at an initial high level presentation to them, then plan how you will develop each area. For example, no point in you developing huge energy for office solutions in the south west, when the surge may be outside in the north east.
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A Kurdziel on 18/04/2019(UTC)
hopeful  
#9 Posted : 18 April 2019 12:19:23(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
hopeful

I would also consider the impact of such business plans on management. Will the focus on H&S be lessened because their business objectives are so tough that they cannot spend time on H&S? Will expansion overtake the mindset, depending on how the objectives are measured and rewarded this could have a massive impact, particularly with availablity for training, completing inspections, attending meetings etc. Also, similar to a previous comment - who is responsible for completing certain actions and activities in the new world, how will this be monitored and how will assurance be provided to the board.

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Kim Hedges on 24/04/2019(UTC), A Kurdziel on 25/04/2019(UTC)
Kim Hedges  
#10 Posted : 24 April 2019 22:20:57(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Kim Hedges

As Hopeful pointed out about the increased H&S concerns, more inductions for more contract staff, more Permit to Work type jobs, more health monitoring if applicable....... 

I remember something similar being raised when I originally learnt about the Management of H&S, basically, as an organisation grows, so too should it's H&S functions, one way is to employ a Director whose sole job is to figurehead all H&S and act as the last word and also the person who is most likely to be charged if somebody dies at work!

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