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Ostwald Bros, West End

Winner of 2016 Queensland Safe Work Awards

Category eight – Best demonstrated leadership in work health and safety

Starting out as a civil construction company in 1990, Ostwald Bros has expanded to include contracting, mining services, construction materials, facilities and accommodation, transport and bulk haulage, and rural enterprise.

Chief Executive Officer, Brendan Ostwald and the senior management team, lead and drive the work health and safety culture at Ostwald Bros as evident in their 'daily, now, always' (DNA) programs.

The DNA positive safety choices program, DNA supervisor development and DNA lead programs are tailored Certificate IV programs in work, health and safety and civil construction supervision. Importantly and uniquely, the programs offer every front-line leader at Ostwald Bros access to industry relevant and nationally accredited certifications.

With a strong focus on upskilling, the DNA programs empower staff to realise the importance of their contributions to safety, driving a culture of proactive safety awareness.

In matching vocational education to the actual needs of the industry, Ostwald Bros has set a new standard of industry led training for the vocational education and training sector, leading the way in their own workplace and in the wider industry.

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On screen text

Ostwald Bros - Safe Work and Return to Work Awards 2016

My name is Dominic O'Brien and I'm the Chief Governance Officer at Ostwald Bros. Ostwald Bros provide services across a range of sectors that predominantly the mining, infrastructure, energy, and agricultural sectors Australia-wide. The CEO of the business outlined a vision. He wanted people to be truly effective leaders in the areas where they operate and he wanted them to be equipped with the skills for them to be able to carry out their work safely and be empowered to make changes in the way that they work.

We coined the phrase 'DNA'. We believe safety should be part of our own DNA, but importantly, really something that we do Daily, Now and Always. We refined the DNA program to be a supervisor development program and we pulled together all of the supervisors across our business in a series of training. It's combining that leadership understanding and capability with some core knowledge about how to act safely in a specific scenario that confronts them in a workplace.

Our consultation and our engagement with our workforce has shown that there has been a significant improvement in the quality of conversation that we are having around safety, which has really unlocked the change for us. We definitely believe that the suite of training initiatives that we have implemented here at Ostwald Bros has direct translation across the industries in which we operate, but really across other industries as well.

Good leadership at a project level can be virtuous for the whole organization and it can beneficial for the whole organization. We're very proud of the DNA program that we've implemented at Oswald Brothers. We've seen an improvement in the quality of conversations that we're having with our employees about working productively and safely. We have a zero total recordable injury frequency rate on all live projects.

We look forward to continuing that exemplary safety performance and to continue to improve the quality of our workforce and their understanding about how to work safely and productively.RUN TIME: 2 min 26 sec