Time to think outside of the box

Changes to our H&S Service

For some years now, we’ve been creating a stock of online forms for our Clients to use. These forms are ‘smart’ in that they are set to respond to user-input and are a much more efficient way of producing and storing information. Brief examples can be seen under our ‘Useful Stuff’ webpage.

The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated this move online, and now the work has come to include meeting clients online – mainly using Microsoft Teams or Zoom, and the fast production of on-the-spot explainer video clips.

Old paradigm

The old-fashioned way of looking at H&S Consultancy services – where the Consultant was viewed as the one who made pronouncements on risk – has changed over the last decade (thank goodness!) to a more collaborative and enabling service.

Of course, Consultants are still asked ‘do you carry out our risk assessments for us’. The answer should be ‘generally, no – we show you how to efficiently do the risk assessments the law requires you, as the employer, to do’.

There are some examples where it can work such as Fire Risk Assessment (if the Consultant has a suitable qualification in this field), or more low-risk assessments such as Display Screen Equipment. However, the general rule is that it is rare for a Consultant to take on the responsibility, and possible liability, for a Client’s risk judgements.

Alongside this, the amount of ‘inspecting’ and ‘auditing’ has reduced dramatically and the corresponding amout of meetings to discuss progress and set updated action plans has increased.

Many areas of work that were previously considered hazardous are more readily rendered less hazardous by modern equipment choices e.g. work at height access equipment, CNC machinery etc. The main weakness in safety systems is not the lack of solutions, but the ‘don’t-care cut-price’ attitudes taken by some employers i.e. the one’s we would not choose to work with in any case!

New paradigm

I’m happy to announce that the ‘Just Health and Safety’ offering in future will be online-focussed with less emphasis on visits – sometimes no visits will be required at all to make good progress.

The delivery of this service will be via face-to-face meetings online alongside offering solutions based on our online smart forms. Clients who have something that they want to show/demonstrate can use their laptops or smartphones to record video clips that we can review.

Payment for services rendered will almost exclusively be ‘Pay-as-you-Go’ at an agreed hourly rate which Clients can cancel at any time without penalty. Every Client will receive a summary pdf report on work completed for the hours being invoiced.

We hope you approve of this new way of working. Once the pandemic has passed this empasis will continue but with the addition of more occasional face-to-face visits.