Every construction site needs site inductions, and the details you include in your induction could make the difference between a safe site and an accident waiting to happen. When your team knows what to do, and what to expect, everyone can work safer, together.
Construction site inductions are a legal requirement. Every worker must have a site induction on every construction site they work on. But what makes a site induction 'suitable'?
We're going to take a look at what you should include in your induction for your employees before start work on your construction site:
A site induction needs to be specific to the project and site, and contain the health and safety information workers need to know. There's nothing wrong with following a standard format, but make sure to adapt each induction to the site it's used on.
Providing your team with general information that could refer to any site, or worse, giving them information that doesn't pertain to the site won't help them understand the dangers and risks they are about to face.
The following site-specific information should be included in your construction site inductions:
Inform your workforce about the site's management from the start, including who to report to, who is responsible for what, and who is in charge of whom. This way, everyone will know their roles and who to go to for help or questions.
What kind of work is happening on the site? Is there anything else on the site that could be a threat? Remember, some of your employees may have been sent to do one specific job, but they should also know what else is going on, to ensure they can function safely.
Are there any site-specific risks your new workers should be aware of, beyond the risks associated with their job role? For example, is there asbestos in the building, or work above their heads? Perhaps there are underground or overhead services on-site to watch out for?
Rules are not made to be broken, but to establish a safe environment. To follow the rules, employees need to be aware of them. The construction site induction is the perfect place to explain which rules apply to the site. Show your new employees what the control measures are and why they need to be followed for the safety of everyone.
Every site will have procedures in place for the safety, organisation, and progress of the work. This may include signing in, security measures, permits, accident reporting, personal protective equipment, hearing protection zones, housekeeping, etc. Make sure your workers know what is expected of them in your site induction process and the procedures they need to follow.
Each construction site is different and can change throughout a project. Make sure your workers are familiar with the site layout, welfare facilities, canteen, first aid provisions, traffic routes, site-specific evacuation procedures, fire fighting equipment etc. at the induction session, and update them on any changes during safety briefings to reduce these hazards and risks from day one.
Communication with your workers should start with your induction and continue throughout your time working together. Keep your workers informed of toolbox talks, planned training, safety meetings, and other site-related events. Get your workforce involved in the planning process and outline consultation procedures.
Give your team time to ask questions to the principal contractor (if they are part of the meetings) and give feedback during the induction process. If they need clarification on something or are unsure about something, it's better to address it during the induction than to let things go wrong on-site. Use the feedback you receive to improve your induction process for next time.
Make sure your induction is specific to the project and relevant to the team. Keep it concise and site-specific so that it's easy for your team to remember the important information.