If certain types of subcontractors or their employees are more likely to have an injury or accident on the job, a contractor should naturally ask themselves, "What can I do about it?" In the world of advanced analytics and massive amounts of insightful data regarding management, employees, and behaviors, this question is being asked more and more. Some think prevention equates to saying "If we knew that about them, we wouldn't hire them in the first place." The easiest road to prevention is avoidance. However, what should one do about employees and contractors who are currently on the team? This article will address safety programs, training, and wellness programs that can have an impact on the frequency and severity of accidents to protect businesses, property and lives.
Safety analytics is a detailed modeling approach to identify groups of individuals, processes, or conditions that may create an unsafe event or accident. Safety analytics use external data (ex. area demographics, industry financial data, etc.), as well as observed data points, to provide a powerful tool to gain insights not previously available. Safety analytics gives users the tools needed to assess, measure, and direct an organization to better practices in all aspects of the operation, creating a safer environment for contractors, employees, and potentially customers. This process will help identify jobs, functions, teams, locations, and processes that may have a greater chance of injury or accident. This applies to all industries, including the construction industry. The analysis gives insight, assists in the creation of action plans to reduce or eliminate severity and/or frequency of incidents, and improves the overall work site. Exhibit 1 represents a sampling of the different types of data points that can be used in the analysis.
For construction projects, this is an important management tool as detailed history with the employee base might not be available. However, with the power of predictive analytics based on external data, the general contractor can get an understanding of the work force and its specific safety needs before the project begins. The behavioral data and lifestyle indicators, combined with credible and timely observation data, can be a powerful combination in the efforts of prevention.
Safety audits have been capturing excellent observation data for many years, but external data has been limited or, in some cases, under-utilized. These data points can be excellent predictive items as managers consider where to direct the specific safety programs. As with any safety effort, the embracing of the program from the grass roots level is essential to its success. Safety analytics can assist in identifying key groups where these efforts need to be directed.
We have all seen the growing use of analytics in our daily lives, from purchase scans at the grocery store to the online purchase of books. How do suppliers know the public will be interested in books other than the intended purchase?