Hillaldam is a supplier of a full range of hardware to local and international markets for use on steel, timber, aluminium and glass doors and windows. They also boast of their flexibility to manufacture specialised projects according to customer requirements. Hillaldam's strength lies in their ability to develop new products and systems of excellent quality in reasonable time frames at very competitive prices. For them, health and safety compliance is a culture rather than something one should struggle to comply with.
Overview of the health and safety compliance of Hillaldam
For the past 12 years, the company has not suffered any loss in production time due to an incident, something that can be considered as a remarkable result.
Jacques Botha, Operations Manager, is confident that the monthly consultations and inspections by the health and safety company, MAKROSAFE significantly contributed to this achievement.
Careful planning ahead of health and safety inspections
The Health and Safety Inspections at Hillaldam is well-organised and easy to access. Jaydee Le Roux, the MAKROSAFE Health and Safety consultant, says, 'When I visit the premises, I first sit with Manuela who does all the admin work on the MAKROSAFE health and safety programme. I inspect the health and safety files to familiarise myself with what has been happening since my last visit and to ensure the health and safety files are up to date. Once I am done, I do my walk through inspection with the Operations Manager. ?�
Introduction to the MAKROSAFE Health and Safety Programme
MAKROSAFE provides Hillaldam with the whole scope of health and safety services. This includes health and safety risk assessment, health and safety inspections, health and safety compliance Audits, Consultation and Evaluations, amongst others. Le Roux says, 'When I visit Hillaldam, I am usually able to finalize my health and safety report while I am there. The company is well-organised which makes it easier for me to complete my health and safety consultation successfully. I take the health and safety compliance report with action requests and we have a look to see what was rectified and discuss any new problem areas which will include control measures on the risk assessment, review on any any incidents (if any), any new processes etc.
Jacques Botha says, 'health and safety compliance remains essential to us. We have close to 80 people working on our premises and ensuring their safety is something we do not take lightly. ?�
Health and Safety Policy at Hillaldam
Staff at Hillaldam is closely involved in ensuring health and safety. 'Our policy on health and safety is that each and every one of us is important in achieving a safe and healthy work place. A lot is achieved through establishing a culture where employees feel they can freely express their concerns. We encourage them to raise any health and safety issue immediately even though it is sometimes difficult to break old habits. We also consistently remind them of the importance of a positive attitude and mind-set towards health and safety.
Health and Safety Leadership and Management Commitment
The health and safety reports that MAKROSAFE consultant Jaydee Le Roux produces from the MAKROSAFE software management system are sent through to Hillaldam within 24 hours after the consultation / inspection automatically from the MAKROSAFE management system. 'It is our policy to submit those reports as quick as possible when the information is still vivid in the clients mind. ?�
Even in his busy schedule, Jacques Botha still makes the effort of assessing the report immediately. 'As our operations have run smoothly in terms of health and safety, time needed to assess the monthly reports we get after our health and safety audit is often little. But, regardless of how busy I am, I still make the effort to go through it immediately, ?� he explains. 'I try to tick off the boxes and be aware of the importance of anything indicated. When it is urgent, we'll have immediate action taken. ?�
Hazard Identification, Risk Assessment and Determining Controls
The machines used at Hillaldam have been assessed by MAKROSAFE to identify any hazards that could contribute to incidents. A Risk Assessment is done on a continuous basis and suitable control measures are suggested for the risks identified, by the consultant and they should be implemented immediately. 'It is very important to get input from various angles when doing a health and safety risk assessment, especially from management and the employees as the users of the machinery. The tasks and machine are inspected while in operation for us to determine the risk factors and controls needed to reduce the risk. We will then prepare the risk assessment with our own input as well and discuss it with the manager. From there, the manager will discuss it with the relevant employees, ?� Le Roux elaborates.
Legal and Other Requirements in Health and Safety
Hillaldam Sliding Door Systems meets all the legal health and safety standards. Their most recent achievement was receiving their ISO 9001 status. 'The ISO 9001 status is important for us as it documents quality throughout the production chain. It will open new doors for us while we can guarantee the quality of the products that we get supplied with. The ISO standard expects everything to be documented and that safe operating procedures are followed, ?� explains Botha. The fact that the MAKROSAFE Health and Safety Programme is 100% aligned with OHSAS 18001 management system turned out to be of great assistance in getting us certified in ISO 9001.
Competence, Training and Awareness in Health and Safety
Botha points out that all their employees are sufficiently trained. 'We often send staff to health and safety training off-site but, if needs be, MAKROSAFE will come to our premises to educate our employees. I am going on the 'Health and Safety for Management' training course soon presented by MAKROSAFE to renew mu certificate. Even though I did this course several years ago, it is important that I remain up-to-date with what is happening. This will allow me to understand better the improvements that are suggested or to pro-actively mitigate possible risk, ?� he adds. 'Although all our staff has been trained, the importance of health and safety is constantly emphasised. Where possible, we try to make things visual as this is the best way of communicating and reminding people of the message. You'll be surprised to find out how many people know of somebody who has had an accident or has been involved in something that we try to prevent. Visualising the risks is the best way to have the consequences communicated which is of great help in preventing it from happening in the first place. ?�
Communication, Participation and Consultation in Health and Safety
Many employees have been with Hillaldam for many years. This makes it easier for Hillaldam and MAKROSAFE to control the health and safety risk as employees are experienced in their relevant fields.
The achievement of no production time lost for the past 12 years has, however, not affected the alertness of the employees. Jaydee Le Roux shares, 'I have spent some time with the first aiders on my previous visit to ensure they are doing their inspections correctly. All they want to do is learn and ask questions regarding safety. You rarely see such a positive approach often when there is no immediate need. ?�
Health and Safety Documentation
Hillaldam clearly communicates its messages. One way of communicating information, Botha says, is through their laminated safe operating procedures that are displayed throughout the premises. New equipment is extensively documented before it is released for use. 'None of the machines that we accept can be considered as 'plug-and-play; they first have to be documented and inspected before we can decide how to safely use the equipment. Once that is determined, all correct procedures can be read on the posters on the machine. ?�
Emergency Preparedness and Response
With the woes of load shedding, Hillaldam is taking a step forward in ensuring they are always prepared for such emergencies. A generator has been acquired to ensure lights remain on even when the power goes off. Emergency procedures are also clearly communicated. One of these procedures is the evacuation floor plan. Le Roux says, 'All their evacuation plans were recently reviewed to establish whether they were still compliant according to the SANS standard. This was required to be done in order to help them with their ISO9001 quality audit. ?�
Health and Safety Performance Measurement and Monitoring
To ensure that employees keep a high health and safety standards, they are regularly assessed by a professor who specialises in skills-development. The professor assists them in health and safety procedures. 'It's part of an approach towards employees' well-being that has been with Hillaldam for many years. Given the fact that we haven't had to report any incident or injury, it is fair to claim that this approach clearly works, ?� Botha points out.
Evaluation of Health and Safety Compliance
When evaluating health and safety compliance, Hillaldam respects the knowledge and experience of the MAKROSAFE consultant. 'He will indicate what is important and what requires immediate attention or what should be fixed in due course, ?� Jacques Botha says. 'Where possible, I aim at ticking off boxes immediately to make sure health and safety risks are mitigated. The good thing is that not everything requires money but merely need attention and effort. ?� Health and Safety Compliance is evaluated monthly which is the easiest way to maintain healthy and safe programme.
Health and Safety Management Review
Jaydee Le Roux visits Hillaldam every month and reviews there health and safety programme regardless of the achievements that have been made in terms of health and safety. 'Because they have been a client of MAKROSAFE for so long, I do try and assist them with any other areas of health and safety. This includes areas that, perhaps, are not covered in our Service Level Agreement. I don't consider that a big issue as the overall health and safety of the company is paramount. ?�
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