Accidents at work and work-related ill-health not only cause major disruptions to business processes but can also hugely impact an individual’s quality of life. In 2019, Kindred reviewed its health and safety process and implemented further systems and processes to ensure that the company operated to the highest possible standards. To show the employees how important their health, safety and wellbeing are, Kindred’s London office entered the World’s toughest health and safety competition. The result – the RoSPA Gold Award!
The Facility teams undertook health and safety training such as IOSH (International Occupational Safety and Health) and NEBOSH (National Examination Board in Occupational Safety and Health). We were fortunate to get a hold of Kajsa Eriksson, Head of Corporate Real Estate & Facilities Management and Petra Angel, Soft Service Manager who have been driving this project and asked them some questions.
Petra and Kajsa, congratulations are in order! Kindred Group’s London office just received the RoSPA Gold Award. What does this actually mean?
Petra: RoSPA stands for Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents. Accidents at work and work-related ill-health not only cause major disruptions to business processes but can also hugely impact an individual’s quality of life. We wanted to benchmark our performance and demonstrate to our employees how much their health, safety and wellbeing mean to Kindred.
It is said that this is the toughest health and safety competition in the world. Can you please explain why?
Petra: In health and safety fields RoSPA is one of the most prestigious and recognised schemes in the world, with almost 2000 entries every year and a reach of over 7 million employees.
How did Kindred’s London office receive this award – were we nominated or did we apply ourselves?
Petra: We applied ourselves and had to enter ten key performance questions (see enclosed), provide accident and ill health and enforcement data, as well as supply hyperlinked evidence to support our entry. We’ve spent a lot of time implementing health and safety processes and procedures and this was our first time entering a competition of this level. The benchmark levels are merit, bronze, silver or gold recognition, so to actually get gold is just fantastic! We were notified by email from Baroness Jolly of our achievement.
Why did the London office receive this award?
Petra: We were able to demonstrate the highest standard of process and procedures to the ten key performance questions in the enclosed document.
Kajsa: The Facilities Management teams at Kindred always work with Health and Safety in mind, which reflects in the London office achievement in receiving this award. Petra works in close collaboration with our Office Manager in London, as well as the fantastic local Facilities Management team. They base their decisions on Health and Safety aspects in mind, which made it possible for us to reach this standard. It’s all about a systematic way of working with this, and not an “achieve and leave” scenario. An award like this reflects a long-term success in working with Health and Safety.
How did your team make this happen?
Petra: Kajsa has championed health and safety processes and procedures in all the large offices. As a result, 100% of the facilities team attended and achieved either IOSH (International Occupational Safety and Health) or NEBOSH (National Examination Board in Occupational Safety and Health) health and safety certification, so we have significant ‘in house’ knowledge of the best practice.
We designed and implemented health and safety processes, audits, checklists, reviews and systems in all of our larger offices. We also used existing communication tools, such as Confluence, to help share the best practice - it’s just that the London office was our first attempt at external benchmarking. This award really reflects the hard work of all the office managers, office assistants and global Corporate Real Estate and Facilities Management team around health and safety.
Kajsa: We are working tirelessly when it comes to creating a great office experience for our employees. The biggest part of that experience is to ensure the office is safe in all aspects, and to promote wellbeing. For us in Corporate Real Estate and Facilities Management, health and safety is not just a tick in a box exercise.
We work on continuous improvements and are always looking to raise the bar. The past year clearly shows how important it is to be working in a proactive way with health and safety. I am extremely proud to head the team and see how their, and especially Petra’s in this matter, hard work results in an award like this. Very impressed.
What does this mean for our employees?
Petra: We really hope this award promotes confidence in our office health and safety procures – especially as we start to emerge from the impact of Covid-19.
What are your thoughts going forward?
Petra: We know that we must continually review our practices and procedures around health and safety to ensure we maintain the highest possible standards. This award inspires and drives us to achieve more. We are already looking into how we can improve on our environmental credentials.
Kajsa: Health and safety, as well as wellbeing in our offices, is our number one priority and we will build on this solid foundation. From here we will keep on pushing!