5th May, 2022
If you have just set up a new site, you might be wondering who you need to give a site induction to. Workers? Contractors? Designers? Engineers? Consultants? The client? In this blog post, we discuss who should attend your site induction, and why.
A site induction is a way of providing information about a project or your site to people. This information is needed on a person's first day on the site because they are new and don't know their way around yet.
Your site induction is necessary for many reasons. For example, people might not:
In addition to site inductions being a legal requirement, it also makes sense for your business to do one. It clears up any confusion at the start of the project and improves understanding of the project and the work involved.
But who should attend your site induction? Your workers should, but what about other contractors? What about their subcontractors? Should consultants and engineers? What about designers?
New workers should always attend a site induction. And not just if the worker is new to your business, but if they are new to the site.
In construction, it's a legal requirement for construction workers to attend a site induction on every project they work on.
And in addition to site inductions being a legal requirement, it also makes sense for your business to do one each time a worker goes to a new or unfamiliar workplace.
Without an induction, new workers will have similar questions which take time to answer individually. Work can be slow to start because people are unsure where to go for things, like for breaks or to get equipment. Time gets spent asking questions or worrying about what they don't know. Rules get broken - simply because they are unknown. And accidents or mistakes are more likely to happen.
With a site induction, you can answer everyone's questions before they start work, make sure people know what they need to do, and how to stay safe. Common concerns get addressed, and site rules are explained. Any confusion can be cleared up before people start work, meaning that workers are more productive.
It's not just your workers that should attend the site induction. If you have other contractors working on your site they need to attend it too.
It doesn't matter if workers are directly employed by you or employed by a contractor or subcontractor on your project. They need to have an induction.
In construction, if you are the principal contractor, the responsibility for induction falls on your shoulders.
(4) The principal contractor must ensure that—
- a suitable site induction is provided;
It doesn't need to be extra work for you.
Contractors are likely to need the same induction as your direct workers. They need to know the same site rules, and will probably have similar questions.
Your team probably includes more than workers. There may be members of the project team who are not site-based. Contract managers, project managers, and quantity surveyors, for example.
These people might not be on your site as often as workers, and they might not work a full day on the site, but they should still receive an induction.
Depending on the nature of the involvement in the project, they might not need the same level of induction as a worker or contractor. But also consider that they may not have the same level of practical experience dealing with site hazards as a contractor.
Your project probably has other experts and consultants involved. Like architects, designers and engineers. These people might visit the site from time to time, to address any queries, assess progress or check on the work.
Although these visitors might not strictly be carrying out work on the site. They still need an induction.
Site inductions should also be provided to those who do not regularly work on the site, but who visit it on an occasional (eg architects) or once-only basis (eg students). The inductions should be proportionate to the nature of the visit.
After all, these visitors might not be as familiar with the project, or the project team. Maybe it's their first time working with your company, or the contractors involved. They might not know how you run things and are likely to have questions, even if they are only on the site for a short time.
Your induction for visitors should be proportionate. If you are escorting a visitor on the site, for example, they won't need to think for themselves when it comes to assessing hazards or obeying rules.
The client may not ever visit the site, or they might be heavily involved in the project.
If you keep the client up to date through off-site meetings or remote communication, they won't need an induction.
But if they do visit the site, then they will need an induction. Usually, a client will be inducted as a visitor because they are not working on the site.
And if you will be showing the client around at various stages of the project, they could have a minimal site induction, like an escorted visitor.
The important thing to remember is that during the work, site safety within your site boundary is your responsibility. Even if the client is the ultimate owner of the site, you need to ensure that your site is safe, and your rules are followed.
Usually, your work area will contain only the people involved in your work. But there are times when you may need to carry out work in someone else's workplace, or within an occupied building.
If you can separate and secure your work area, you can minimise any overlap of hazards.
But if your work is likely to interfere with other people occupying the building or site, you should consider inducting them. They need to be made aware of the increased risks and any extra rules in place for their safety.
Now you know that just about anyone who comes to your site should be inducted, what should you include in your site induction?
This article was written by Emma at HASpod. Emma has over 10 years experience in health and safety and BSc (Hons) Construction Management. She is NEBOSH qualified and Tech IOSH.
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