The interaction between the implementation of an occupational health and safety management system and safety culture: a case study in the rubber industry
A prominent theme emerging in Occupational Health and Safety (OSH) is the development of management systems. A range of interventions, according to a prescribed route detailed by one of the management systems, can be introduced into an organisation with some expectation of improved OSH performance. This thesis attempts to identify the key influencing factors that may impact upon the process of introducing interventions, (according to B88800: 1996, Guide to Implementing Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems) into an organisation. To help identify these influencing factors a review of possible models from the sphere of Total Quality Management (TQM) was undertaken and the most suitable TQM model selected for development and use in aSH. By anchoring the aSH model's development in the reviewed literature a range ofeare, medium and low level influencing factors were identified. This model was developed in conjunction with the research data generated within the case study organisation (rubber manufacturer) and applied to the organisation. The key finding was that the implementation of an OSH intervention was dependant upon three broad vectors of influence. These are the Incentive to introduce change within an organisation which refers to the drivers or motivators for OSH. Secondly the Ability within the management team to actually implement the changes refers to aspects, amongst others, such as leadership, commitment and perceptions of OSH. Ability is in turn itself influenced by the environment within which change is being introduced. TItis aspect of Receptivity refers to the history of the plant and characteristics of the workforce. Aspects within Receptivity include workforce profile and organisational policies amongst others. It was found that the TQM model selected and developed for an OSH management system intervention did explain the core influencing factors and their impact upon OSH performance. It was found that within the organisation the results that may have been expected from implementation of BS8800:1996 were not realised. The OSH model highlighted that given the organisation's starting point, a poor appreciation of the human factors of OSH, gave little reward for implementation of an OSH management system. In addition it was found that general organisational culture can effectively suffocate any attempts to generate a proactive safety culture.