Proper safety culture fosters personal accountability, which leads to increased employee safety, driving active employee engagement and a strong commitment to our company. This allows every employee to be confident they will return home each day in the same condition as when they arrived at work.
Dedication to Health & Safety is one of our core values. Ours is a culture where every employee is personally accountable to exceeding safety guidelines in every task. We empower and reward employees for stopping work, reporting near misses, and identifying improvements that will impact their own safety and that of others. Every employee has Stop-Work authority because our constant goal is to identify and correct safety issues before they can happen. Ultimately, our focused approach to safety continues to reduce our Total Recordable Injury Rate (TRIR) year over year.
Our Safety Management System—Safety First!
WillScot Mobile Mini has a company-wide focus on safety and has implemented numerous measures as part of our Safety Management System (SMS). Customers increasingly focus on safety records in their sourcing decisions due to increased regulations to report all incidents that occur at their sites and the associated costs. In addition, employees want to work at a company that prioritizes safety. WillScot Mobile Mini employees are proud that we are a safe place to work.
Our safety management system, which we call Safety First!, is administered by a Corporate Team that reports to the General Counsel and Corporate Secretary. This team is responsible for developing, maintaining and administering the safety management system, assisting operations teams and providing training to ensure local teams are aware of and using safe practices, and auditing and monitoring safety performance.
How We Build Our Safety Culture
Our SMS begins with the Health & Safety Culture Policy statement, which highlights the tenets of our commitment to a safe culture. This document was drafted with the participation of the Senior Executive Team. Senior members of our team also actively support WillScot Mobile Mini safety initiatives by providing time, requiring accountability and actively committing to safety from the top of our organization. They review lessons-learned reports and key performance indicators (KPIs), both leading and lagging. General administrative meetings start with a review of pertinent safety protocols and KPIs to highlight where added focus is needed.
We are subject to certain environmental, health and safety and other laws and regulations in countries, states, provinces and localities where we operate. Our health and safety programs are designed around global standards with appropriate variations addressing the multiple jurisdictions, regulations, hazards and unique working environments of our operations. We take responsibility for our own wellbeing and for those around us.
Our SMS is based on both legal requirements and hazards that our employees face daily. Hazard assessments are regularly conducted to reveal issues and trends and determine root causes.
Based on the hazard assessments, WillScot Mobile Mini evaluates each task and creates or modifies standard operating procedures (SOPs) and work instructions. The team also provides safety training to ensure all employees understand the common hazards associated with their job tasks and know the steps each employee must take to complete the task. WillScot Mobile Mini has identified our top 13 focus categories, ranging from power hand tools to fall hazards to electrical awareness/Lockout & Tagout. These 13 categories were chosen for the current period based on our regularly conducted hazard assessment.
WillScot Mobile Mini staff provide safety and health training that exceeds regulatory requirements in line with their employee’s tasks and the hazards they face daily during the completion of their tasks. Topics include Stop Work Authority, hazard awareness, power tool safety, DOT driver courses and more.
Our communication efforts are focused on engaging and ensuring full conformance to each safety topic. For example, our "What's Wrong with this Picture" safety communication focuses on actual company findings and opportunities for improvement. Additional topics are pulled from our Safety Save program data. We also hold weekly safety team meetings and monthly safety theme meetings. Our meetings have a “go and do” focus. Rather than simply sharing data in a classroom, we go into the field to correct any items found in a targeted inspection. An example of a monthly safety theme is "slips, trips and hazards" where we bring awareness to this topic and stress behaviors like proper foot placement, three points of contact, slowing down and eyes on path.
Our corporate safety team conducts regular audits, striving to visit each branch yearly. These audits review a set of consistent SOPs, work practices and KPIs. Senior managers are involved in audit reviews. Where deficiencies or corrective actions are needed, action plans are prepared, executed and tracked to closure. WillScot Mobile Mini tracks a wide range of leading and lagging safety indicators. We focus on leading indicators as a better and more reliable gauge of organizational health than lagging indicators. This allows us to stay ahead of incident management behaviors, conditions or issues that can be corrected before an incident occurs.
We use Safety Scorecards to track safety performance of our drivers, branches and divisions. Our scorecards include safety-leading indicators, which allows us to spot trends before they become problems. These leading indicators are reported and discussed no less than monthly in each region with tracking and accountability.
Regional Safety Committee calls are conducted weekly, with a representative from each branch in attendance. Safety KPIs are discussed as well as actionable items to target. Attendees are then responsible to take any lessons learned to their local teams. All participants are expected to communicate the theme of the meeting to their local branch team members and self-audit to confirm they are all in compliance with these practices.
We have partnered with our insurers for several years to conduct external audits of our safety management system and practices. Seasoned safety auditors from the insurer visit and assess our operational safety practices to look for injury potential based on our latest trends at select branch locations. This program ensures that we leverage external expertise to keep our safety management system best in class.
Results from the Regional Safety Committee calls, the internal and external audits, and Safety Save reports are used to continuously update our SMS. We know the critical importance of safety performance and avoiding injuries. We continue to focus on the root cause of our incidents and change our approach as needed to target trending safety metrics.
Focused on Safety Innovation
Safety Save App
Our innovative and unique Safety Save application, developed in-house, provides the ability for any employee to download the app from the Google or Apple store and report a safety concern. The reported incidents are sent to the appropriate manager who must then follow-up with the reporter, verify that action was taken and close out the card. There are 12 categories of incidents and numerous subcategories that can be selected. To date, we’ve collected more than 35,000 inputs through this application. Experienced safety professionals design and partner with the operating teams to use Safety Save reports to identify near misses, reported injuries or plan safety focus areas based on reported or observed behaviors or findings.
WillScot Mobile Mini invests millions of dollars each year in safety training, equipment and process improvements. One highlight is DriveCam, an onboard driver behavior monitoring system. In the event that risky driving behavior is detected, leaders are informed so they can coach drivers and gain commitment for improvement. This and other innovative initiatives have, in part, led to our industry-leading safe Department of Transportation scores, significant citation reductions and lower insurance rates.