Managing Contractors in the Workplace

Managing Contractors in the Workplace

Managing contractors in the workplace can be a complex task, as they are not employees of the organisation but are brought in to perform specific tasks or services. Despite this, they are still subject to health and safety legislation, and it is the responsibility of the organisation to ensure that they are working in a safe environment with efficient risk control measures in place.

One of the first steps in managing contractors is to establish clear guidelines and expectations. This includes providing a detailed job description or scope of work included in the Section 37.2 agreement, outlining the hours of work, and outlining the specific health and safety requirements that must be followed. It is also important to ensure that contractors understand the organisation's health and safety policies and procedures, including emergency procedures, and the reporting of any incidents or accidents.

It is important to conduct regular risk assessments to identify any potential hazards and to ensure that the necessary controls as per their safety file and scope of work are in place. This includes providing personal protective equipment, implementing safe work procedures, and providing induction training to contractors on the use of any equipment or machinery. In addition, it is important to monitor the work being performed by contractors to ensure that it is being carried out safely and in accordance with the established guidelines.

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Effective communication is crucial when managing contractors. This includes regular updates on the status of the project, providing feedback on their performance, and addressing any issues or concerns that may arise. It is also important to establish clear lines of communication between the organisation and the contractor, to ensure that any issues or concerns can be quickly and effectively addressed.

Another important aspect of managing contractors is ensuring that they are properly insured. This includes workers' compensation insurance and liability insurance. This protects both the contractor and the organisation in the event of an accident or injury. It is important to verify that the contractor's insurance coverage is current and adequate for the work being performed.

In addition to insurance, it is important to have a clear understanding of the contractor's experience and qualifications. This contractor vetting includes verifying their references and conducting a background check to ensure that they have the necessary skills and knowledge to perform the work safely and effectively. It is also important to ensure that contractors are trained on any equipment or machinery that they will be using, as well as on any specific procedures or protocols that must be followed.


When managing contractors, it is important to provide regular feedback on their performance. This includes both positive feedback for a job well done, as well as constructive criticism to help them improve and work more effectively. Feedback should be given in a professional and respectful manner, and should be focused on the work being performed, rather than the person.

Finally, it is important to have a clear process in place for managing incidents or accidents involving contractors. This includes reporting the incident to the appropriate authorities, conducting an investigation to determine the cause of the incident, and implementing any necessary corrective actions. It is also important to provide support to the contractor in the event of an injury, including medical treatment and time off work if necessary.

Keeping your workplace legally Health and Safety Compliant may seem like a daunting task. At MAKROSAFE, we have an experienced team of OHS experts available to assist in keeping your company Health and Safety Compliant according to South African Occupational Health and Safety Act 85 of 1993 and Regulations.

By signing up with The Contractor Management Package,  MAKROSAFE will assist you with your Contractor Risk Management journey.

MAKROSAFE - Contractor Management Package

Managing contractors in the workplace can be a complex task, but it is essential to ensure that they are working in a safe and healthy environment. This requires clear guidelines, effective communication, proper insurance, and ongoing monitoring and feedback. By taking these steps, organisations can ensure that contractors are working effectively and safely, and that the organisation is protected from any potential liability.

Posted date: 9th May 2023
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