It is now widely recognised within high-reliability organisations that employee behaviour is a significant contributory factor in a large proportion of accidents and incidents. With the increasing recognition of the importance of employee behaviour there has been a corresponding increase in the number of companies providing behavioural safety programmes, which aim to reduce unsafe behaviour and thus reduce accident rates. The effectiveness of these programmes appears to vary widely, with some organisations reporting dramatic reductions in accident rates, while others report no improvement. This presents managers with the challenge of trying to select an appropriate programme for their organisation. Their task is made more complex by the terminology used and the fact that all providers can provide examples of success.
The Keil Centre completed a project for the UK Health and Safety Executive's Offshore Safety Division and the oil industry's STEP-Change committee investigating the efficacy of behavioural safety techniques and the characteristics of successful programmes. This project revealed the features of effective programmes and provided organisations with guidance about how to select and implement behaviour modification programmes effectively. The project also produced a model to assist organisations in selecting the behavioural safety programme most suited to their requirements and existing culture. See Safety Culture Maturity Model®.
The Keil Centre's Chartered Psychologists use their expertise in this area to provide organisations with independent advice to assist them in the selection of an appropriate behavioural safety programme. We also provide assistance in 'trouble-shooting' programmes that have encountered difficulties, and re-launching programmes that have fallen into disuse.