To ensure that the safety culture in the construction and engineering industry is improved, in the broadest sense of the word, Unica has joined a number of leading construction players and their clients in drawing up the Governance Code for Safety in the Construction Industry (GCVB). As one of the fourteen initiators behind the GCVB, CEO John Quist has a seat in the group of senior officers of this sectoral code on behalf of Unica.
To underline the importance of safety awareness, Unica reached the second step of the Safety Culture Ladder in 2021. The aim of this instrument is to serve as a tool that encourages businesses and their suppliers to improve awareness of safe working practices. The system was initially developed by ProRail, but since 2016 has been managed by the internationally approved scheme manager NEN. The Safety Ladder is an instrument for measuring safety awareness, attitude and behaviour, with a focus on safety culture. The higher the level of safety awareness achieved in an organisation, the higher the step on the ladder. After obtaining certification for step 2, Unica plans over the coming years to further extend the safety culture in the company, until it reaches the next step on the Safety Ladder.
One of the initiatives that helped achieve certification is the Safe Unica App. This app was developed in 2021 to make it simpler to report (near) accidents and incidents and to promote safety awareness across the board. The app can also be used as a simple reference work for checking up the most important safety instructions. Following the launch of the app in March 2021, it has been downloaded by more than 1,800 users. By making it easier to report accidents via the app, more incidents have been reported which in the past may have gone unrecorded. Unica favours this development and wishes to be fully transparent with regard to safety, although as a consequence, the accident frequency index has risen slightly. The additional information acquired by Unica means the company is able to plan better targeted improvement campaigns.
Unica requires its suppliers to match the minimum level of safety awareness achieved at Unica. Parties supplying products and services to Unica must therefore all satisfy the requirements of step 2 of the Safety Ladder, from 2022 onwards. This agreement has been adopted by all other sector players in the ‘Safety in Tender Procedures (ViA) protocol, which itself is based on the GCVB.