Improving Health & Safety Regulations in Construction with Mobile Working
Use of Technology Today in the Construction Industry
The construction industry today evolves at a rapid pace and in order to keep up, organisations must also progress with the latest technology trends. When it comes to recording information required for the completion of projects, today smartphones and tablets have changed the way the construction industry communicates and records these details while working on-site. The introduction of mobile applications has meant construction field-based teams can document, access and share information while at the point of service delivery. This information is essential for improving compliance, however, using mobile working solutions must be done in accordance with health and safety regulations.
Health and Safety Regulations and the Cost of Breaching
According to HSE, within the UK there are 80,000 construction workers who suffer from work-related bad health each year and 64,000 who suffer non-fatal injuries. In the 2016/2017 reporting year alone, there were 30 construction-related deaths. There are various health and safety risks associated within the construction field, including hazards, asbestos, slips and trips, noise pollution, and manual handling.
Today, organisations must abide by health and safety regulations and procedures to ensure the welfare of their employees and buildings, as well as minimising the risk of incidents occurring. Breaching these regulations can result in costly fines or lead to serious accidents. Research carried out by global law firm Clyde and Co suggests that costs relating to health and safety breaches in the construction industry has doubled (research from 2017) in a year to £13m, an 83% increase up from £7m. So, how can organisations ensure compliance is adhered to and health and safety hazards are identified with mobile working?
How Mobile Working can Benefit the Construction Industry
Mobile working has significant benefits in relation to meeting health and safety standards in the construction industry. By gathering data and analysing reports, the ability to identify hazards and people at risk becomes more responsive; the ability to record, plan and inform field-based teams of any issues is improved. Tracking those issues and capturing evidence-based images and sign off signatures provides supporting data essential for improving compliance.
The use of paper forms can be a time-consuming process and can cause data entry errors as well as breaching security risks if paperwork is misplaced. Mobile workforce management solutions use digital forms which removes the need to complete such paperwork while minimising errors created with manual data entry.
The use of mobile technology helps streamline processes, ensuring all information is captured securely and kept up to date in one place. It also allows for effective communication between field-based staff ensuring any issues are responded to efficiently and in real time. Implementing mobile technology validates all work is time stamped, recording date and time, signature capture and any other essential information required. This information is extremely important when it comes to safety inspections and gives your organisation peace of mind that data is recorded accurately.
Field-based teams can also reduce travel time spent travelling between sites and the office. By being compliant, organisations can prevent the number of incidents that occur, ultimately avoiding significant fines, whilst keeping employees updated on industry standards and regulations.
Arguably, some would suggest using a mobile phone or even a paper clipboard on-site can be viewed as a distraction or health and safety risk in itself, however mobile workforce management solutions enable employees with the information to ensure they can check all project requirements prior to starting their daily duties such as Asbestos hazards. Once on-site field-based employees can identify information which needs captured and carry this out in a safe manner for example on a flat service rather than from a height.
Mobile Workforce Management from Totalmobile
At Totalmobile, our easy to use solutions are designed to provide your field-based employees with everything they need at the point of service delivery. Our intuitive forms ensure evidence is accurately documented and signatures are captured to provide a transparent audit trail. To find out more about how we help construction organisations ensure health and safety compliance regulations are met, contact us today or find out more by downloading our Clancy Docwra case study.