Hear from Dr Tristan Casey as he explains what safety capability is and how organisations cope with and manage workplace health and safety when faced with things like uncertainty and high risk in their operating environments.
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RUN TIME: 2 mins 20 secs
Speaker 1 (00:02):
Hi, my name is Dr. Tristan Casey and I'm the lead researcher on the Measures of safety capability project. Now this project involved four different academic institutions, Griffith University, Queensland, University of Technology, University of Queensland, and Curtin University. So before we go any further, it's probably a good idea to define what exactly do I mean when I say safety capability. Well, it's quite a straightforward definition. Safety capability means really the potential of an organisation to cope with and manage workplace health and safety when faced with things like uncertainty and high risk in their operating environments. Now you're probably wondering why do we need a new term? How is this different to safety culture? How is it different to safety climate? Well, safety capability actually includes these concepts of culture and climate. Uh, it's more of the tangible and hence measurable and tangible aspects of an organisation, um, that quick can actually understand and use that information to improve and, and build our capacity to be able to give our workers safe and healthy working environments.
Speaker 1 (01:08):
So safety capability is created and measured via three, what we call enabling capitals or what we maybe call building blocks to be a little bit more accurate. Organisational capital, social capital, and human capital. Importantly, safety capability is what we call multi-level. It is based on the perceptions of workers and also of supervisors and managers in an organisation. The questions refer to different layers in the organisation. It also uses familiar language that will resonate with business leaders and managers and employers out there in in the real world. Um, the idea of enabling capitals, the idea of capability, um, these are terms that we're familiar with in the business world. And I guess the last point is because that it's a leading indicator tool. It's something that organisations are crying out for. How do we measure our potential to do well when it comes to workplace health and safety, it will help you assess your current potential for safety capability and also help you to identify some strengths and opportunities to improve, helping you to direct future efforts to make your workplace a safer and better place to work.