Using a Yellow Card System | Hasmate health and safety
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Using a Yellow Card System

Using a Yellow Card System

One of the key changes to the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 was the requirement that businesses must involve their employees in health and safety.

I have made the comment before, but it is an indictment on New Zealand businesses when legislation must be enacted that requires employers to involve their employees in health and safety matters.

The 2015 Act certainly outlines this responsibility, but what’s a simple way to do this?

Numerous ways have been created to achieve this, e.g. health and safety committees, increased health and safety meetings, JSA discussions, daily toolbox meetings, mobile applications to allow direct onsite recording of new hazards and incidents, etc. While a combination of these methods are being applied, many SMEs box on with the numerous reporting forms to achieve the same result.

The Yellow Card System

A simple and effective process to achieve the same use of many forms is the Yellow Card system, a system that allows the user to document 10 different events, as well as having a full health and safety meeting agenda on the back page.

This system is part of a positive, no-blame system for encouraging employees to bring their health and safety concerns or ideas for improvements of a business, to the attention of their employers.

While many employers are involving their employees in health and safety management, many are not, and employees are remaining silent. Why is this? Is it because of:

  • The fear of losing their employment?
  • The business culture?
  • An ethnic or cultural characteristic – not to question or to challenge the authority of management?
  • A lack of a method to report safety and other issues to management?
  • An attitude of “been there, done that, and nobody listens”?
  • Or is it “I have told my manager/supervisor, who has used my idea and made it their own, and got the recognition?”

There are many reasons, and the sad thing is that businesses who do not listen to their employee’s ideas, or concerns, are the real losers.

One simple idea from an employee could be the difference between the demise, or even the closure, of a business.

I believe that what managers and decisionmakers have to come to terms with is that they don’t have a mortgage on knowledge. Many of their employees may have a range of complementary skills and experiences that are an untapped resource for their business.

Here is a proven and simple solution – the Yellow Card System.

This is a simple to use, one-page, multifunctional recording process that Hasmate have installed into numerous businesses that can help encourage communication within the business with real positive results.

Why? Because:

  1. It’s available to all employees (accessible!);
  2. It’s multi-choice with 10 options to use (easy!);
  3. It’s the employee’s vehicle to record and to be involved in health and safety (empowering!);
  4. It’s a simple, easy to use and practical method for recording and near miss incidents, minor accidents and other workplace improvement ideas.

The key to the success of this program is that:

  1. It’s included in the staff induction process;
  2. All employees are trained in its use;
  3. Their recorded ideas are taken onboard and they are given feedback;
  4. It’s a no-blame system, regardless of what’s documented;
  5. The employees are involved in the solution and implementation of their ideas and health and safety concerns.

This system is more that health and safety – it’s about ownership of their ideas, and enhances their involvement in the improvement of the business operations.

Recording their ideas

The Yellow Card System can be managed as a paper-based system, but also works in tandem with our Hasmate compliance management program. This is the online recording part of the system where the employee’s improvement ideas and concerns are recorded.

The key benefits to the online Hasmate program:

  • The information is recorded and stored electronically;
  • It is available 24/7;
  • The original yellow card can be scanned and copied to the appropriate recording module;
  • The ten different reporting items can be attached/linked to the employee’s personnel file.

It eliminates the need for:

  • Records manuals;
  • Folders;
  • Spreadsheets; and
  • Filing cabinets.

Your business can generate reports, and the best of all, the business can, at the click of a button, produce a printable profile on an employee’s involvement in health and safety, and other matters.

This is a great resource to improve the efficacy of your:

  • Personnel management processes;
  • Staff reviews and involvement outcomes; and
  • To show and to prove due diligence of your involvement of your employees in health and safety and other employment matters.

The WorkSafe program is a great initiative and combined with our Yellow Card System, will provide your business with a positive and interactive business improvement tool.

To discuss the Yellow Card system further, and if it’s right for your business, please contact us today.