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THE EFFECT OF SAFETY MANAGEMENT ON PROJECT PERFORMANCE IN A CONSTRUCTION COMPANY

THE EFFECT OF SAFETY MANAGEMENT ON PROJECT PERFORMANCE IN A CONSTRUCTION COMPANY

ABSTRACT

Construction sites are most times very hazardous due to the bulk and types of materials and equipment employed towards the realization of the project. To this effect, various forms of accidents abound at various stages of construction and in various operations.

This project work aims at investigation and evaluation, the response of construction firms/managers to health safety and welfare requirements on construction sites in Asaba, Delta state. Different methods such as survey approach using questionnaires, site visitation, and interviews were adopted to realize the aims of this work… (Scroll down for the link to get the Complete Chapter One to Five Project Material)

SAFETY MANAGEMENT

INTRODUCTION

Background of the Study

The construction industry constitutes one of the industries with the highest number of hazardous nature of work which requires the implementation of safety policy and safety management so as to mitigate the inherent risk and hazards in the construction industry. The term safety is defined as the mitigation of risk to a level that is reasonably low as practicable. Therefore Safety management systems (SMS) constitute a detailed management system formulated to implement safety policy in the organization.

The SMS consist of plans, objectives, policy, procedures, responsibility, organization, etc. The essence of SMS is to identify the hazard and mitigate risk in the organization and also ensuring that these risk controls are effective SMS is a measure adopted as an explicit, rational, and detailed process for managing safety risks.

The significance of ensuring safety in the work environment is fundamentally upheld by different studies as the work environment is exposed to intrinsic hazards and risk factors which exact negative influences on the firms’ overall performance. Consequently, the construction industry constitutes as one of the most hazardous industries.

According to the International Training Centre of the International Labour Organization (2011), the ratio of one to six fatal accidents takes place at the construction site. Also, a further estimate indicates that about 60,000 fatal accidents take place annually on construction sites around the world… (Scroll down for the link to get the Complete Chapter One to Five Project Material)

Statement of the Problem

The level of incidents of hazards in the construction industry is enormous resulting in an increased rate of deaths and permanently disabled citizens of construction employees. This repeated cases of accidents emanate from falls from height, trapped by a collapsed building, an accident from a moving vehicle, electricity or electrical burns, contact with operating machinery or material being machined, exposure to a hot or harmful substance, or fire.

The significance of ensuring safety in the work environment is fundamentally upheld by different studies as the work environment is exposed to intrinsic hazards and risk factors which exact negative influences on the firms’ overall performance… (Scroll down for the link to get the Complete Chapter One to Five Project Material)

Research Objectives

The research objectives are as follows:

  • To determine the nature of safety management… (Scroll down for the link to get the Complete Chapter One to Five Project Material)

SAFETY MANAGEMENT

LITERATURE REVIEW

Introduction

The main aim of carrying out the literature reviews is to gather information on the research topic. As it will be mentioned in the bibliography at the end of the report the mains sources are from journal papers, seminar and conference articles, paperwork, and reference books.

The study begins with a detailed literature review on quality Management And safety culture in the construction industry focusing firstly on the nature of the scope of the construction industry and the most activities that involve perilous and dangerous operations. Subsequently, an overview of the dramatic level of occupational injuries and fatalities occurring throughout the word is highlighted in order to point out the huge importance of managing quality Management And safety culture performance.

Thereafter the focus would be on the need to improve the process of quality management and safety culture in the construction project taking into account the factors responsible for major causes of site accidents with the effect of globalization aspect and cultural issues which are also analyzed. Finally, the challenge faced by developing countries such as Nigeria is in implementing effective quality Management And safety culture procedures.

Quality Management And safety culture definitions

Before a detailed discussion of quality management and safety, culture issues can take place, some basic occupational quality management and safety culture definitions are required as well as the legal framework for quality management and safety culture.

This is because it seems important to have a clear understanding of nature and working conditions in the construction industry and safety organizations to develop an efficient tool for quality Management And safety culture issues.

Health is the protection of the bodies and minds of people from illness resulting from the materials, processes, or procedures used in the workplace.

Safety is the protection of people from physical injury. The borderline between quality Management and safety culture is ill-defined and the two words are normally used together to indicate concern for the physical and mental well-being of the individual at the place of work.

Welfare is the provision of facilities to maintain the health and well-being of individuals at the workplace… (Scroll down for the link to get the Complete Chapter One to Five Project Material)

Scope of the construction industry and general problem description

The construction industry plays a vital role in the social and economic development of all countries. its scope is very wide from larger civil engineering projects such as road and bridge, water supply and sewerage schemes and river and canal work, etc. construction works are also needed in agriculture, industry, education, health, and other service industries.

It is classified into various segments industrial, housing, commercial, utilities, and infrastructure work. Thus the construction industry is a mixture of different organizations, which directly and indirectly influence the construction process. These organizations include property developers, architects, engineers, quantity surveyors, accountants, lawyers, civil engineering contractors, engineering contractors, management contractors, laborers, subcontractors, and specialist trades.

The construction industry‘s importance has been confirmed by several studies (Coble and Haupt, 1999)… (Scroll down for the link to get the Complete Chapter One to Five Project Material)

Accidents statistics in the construction

The construction industry accounts for a high number of occupational injuries and fatalities every year. The construction industry, when compared with other (labor-intensive) industries, has historically experienced a disproportionately high rate of disabling injuries and fatalities for its size (Hinze, 1997). Despite improvements in occupational safety over the last decade, around 5 500 people lose their lives each year through work-related accidents in the European Union.

More than 75 000 are so severely disabled that they can no longer work. Moreover, major surveys have found that people experience more physical problems at work than before; dispelling the often fashionable belief that new technology has eradicated difficulties such as the manual lifting of heavy objects.

The industry alone produces 30 % of all fatal industrial accidents across the European Union (EU), yet it employs only 10 % of the working population; in the United States (US) it accounts for 20 % of all fatal accidents and only 5 % of the employed (Smallwood, 2000)… (Scroll down for the link to get the Complete Chapter One to Five Project Material)

Globalization and Cultural effect

Globalization is an inevitable fact as construction quality Management And safety culture is a global issue in that it is a concern wherever construction activities take place. It is no longer possible for governments to legislate in isolation because changes that once only affected their own population and possibly their nearest neighbors now have more far-reaching consequences.

This is in some part possible due to cheaper methods of travel and instant world-wide communication through the internet. Workers are able to find out about work through internet agencies and travel to different countries at a relatively low cost. Therefore with the growing international activity in construction, there has been an increasing awareness of the importance of a better understanding of cross-cultural management (Torrance, 2004)… (Scroll down for the link to get the Complete Chapter One to Five Project Material)

Challenge in developing countries

There is a wide variation in economic structures, occupational structures, working conditions, work environment, and the health status of workers in different regions of the world, in different countries and in different sectors of the economy. Therefore the mechanization of the construction industry is not uniform throughout the world.

However, as stated earlier, the construction industry plays a vital role in boosting the economy of any country, especially a developing country. It provides the infrastructure required for other sectors of the economy to flourish. Many studies, such as Coble and Haupt (1999) have shown that the construction industry reflects the level of economic development within the country. The construction sector everywhere faces problems and challenges.

However, in developing countries, these difficulties and challenges are present alongside a general level of socio-economic stress and a lower productivity rate when compared to developed countries (Ofori, 2000). Nevertheless, it is generally believed that the construction industry is a good source of employment at various levels of skills, from general labor to semi-skilled, skilled, and specialist workforce.

Other major areas that impact on this sector are lack of research and development, lack of trade and safety training, client dissatisfaction, and the continuously increasing construction costs (all of which result in less profitability)… (Scroll down for the link to get the Complete Chapter One to Five Project Material)

SAFETY MANAGEMENT

RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

Research Design

The survey was conducted with a variety of construction companies in Asaba, Delta state. It comprised a total of 350 original structured questionnaires that were distributed to over 70 construction workers, contractors, owners, and consultant organizations.

A series of interviews with both safety managers and quality managers were held during the same period. The main interviews covered senior site engineers from different companies. The population comprised companies that are operating in Asaba, Delta state. The sampling frame comprised general contractors registered with the Nigeria and Construction Authority.

Pilot questionnaire

There are some key considerations the researcher has taken into account while developing the questionnaire for the purpose of the current research. The design of the questionnaire was based upon the research objectives and theoretical directions derived from the literature review as well as a preliminary questionnaire which consisted of a few simple questions about their quality Management And safety culture awareness.

This preliminary questionnaire was sent to a selected small number of companies (six) to get a feeling of a number of quality management and safety culture aspects within these construction companies… (Scroll down for the link to get the Complete Chapter One to Five Project Material)

RESEARCH FINDINGS AND DISCUSSION

Results

From a total of 55 members of staff available to complete the survey, 37 responses were received, a 67 percent return rate. The reason for failing to complete the questionnaire was mainly related to lack of time, although it was clear that some senior members of staff thought the questionnaire impinged on the management function.

The culture was identified using a climate survey questionnaire administered to all staff followed by a serious of meetings to confirm the interpretation of the survey results and to provide them with an opportunity to offer solutions and suggestions for improving the organization.

Questionnaire Analysis

As remarked in the previous chapter, the questionnaire consists of 7 parts in total. The responses to each question are analyzed as a whole so that an overall view of the situation in Nigeria is presented. Also, in-depth analysis by company type is conducted to determine the extent of those problems in each category.

The purpose of each question is stated while carrying out the analysis and the result is demonstrated using appropriate charts. In some parts, a number of questions are grouped together as some questions are relevant to each other, making the analysis of responses to those questions more sensible.

Section 1: Organization Type

Question 1.1

The question asked organizations about their business size and type. The purpose of this question was to determine the response rate from each category.

Figure 6.2 displays that the received responses were comprised of 54% and 19% from small and medium construction companies respectively. On the other hand, the responses from large construction companies and oil companies were 12% and 15% respectively.

SAFETY MANAGEMENT

Question 2 .2

In order to ensure that the responses were reliable and valid, it was important to determine the position of the person who answered the questionnaire within the company. Figure 6.3

SAFETY MANAGEMENT

As figure 6.3 displays, 43% of persons who filled out the questionnaire were general managers of the participating companies and 21% were site engineers. Besides, 16%, 11%, and 9% of the questionnaires were completed by executive managers, quality Management And safety culture managers, and quality Management And safety culture officers respectively… (Scroll down for the link to get the Complete Chapter One to Five Project Material)

CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS

Conclusions

This research through the literature review that was carried out has shown that very little work has been undertaken as concerns quality Management And safety culture in the NIGERIA, and no data to support the research was available, hence, the importance of the questionnaires and the interviews in shedding some light, however, limited, on this new topic as far as the NIGERIA is concerned.

It is hoped that this work has made a modest contribution to knowledge and would guide researchers in the future to expand on some of the aspects investigated by this research and look into other aspects… (Scroll down for the link to get the Complete Chapter One to Five Project Material)

Recommendations

This research has shown that small firms do not seem to have the ability or motivation to achieve high levels of quality Management And safety culture standards when benchmarked against larger firms. This calls into the question the notion that quality Management And safety culture performance can be achieved by simply introducing government Quality Management And Safety Culture. The construction, refurbishment, and maintenance of facilities involve many small firms that seem to take large risks… (Scroll down for the link to get the Complete Chapter One to Five Project Material)

SAFETY MANAGEMENT

REFERENCES

Adams-Webber, J.R., (1998), Differentiation and Sociality in Terms of Elicited and Provided Constructs, Psychological Science, Volume 9 Issue 6, Blackwell Publishing.

Agaj, I. (2000). Safety in large construction projects. M.Sc. Dissertation, School of  Construction, University of Florida, p.77.

Balch, A. and Geddes, A. (2003) UK migration policy in light of sectoral dynamics: the case of the construction sector, 1-14. In UACES sponsored study group on evolving EU migration law and policy.

Ballard, G. (2000) Ph.D. Dissertation, School of Civil Engineering, The University of Birmingham, U.K., May, 192 pp.

Baruch, G. (1981). Moral tales. Journal of Sociology, 3, 3, 275-296.

Baxendale, T. and Jones, O. (2000) Construction Design and Construction Management Safety Regulations in Practice: Progress and Implementation, International Journal of Project Management, 18 (1), pp. 33–40.

Beail, N. (1985) Repertory Grid Techniques, and Personal Constructs – Applications in Clinical and al Settings, Crone Helm, London.

Bell, R.C., Vince, J., Costigan, J., (2002) Which vary more in repertory grid data: Constructs or Elements? Journal of Constructivist Psychology, Brunner-Routledge. (Safety Management)(Safety Management)(Safety Management)(Safety Management)(Safety Management)(Safety Management)(Safety Management)

Benoliel, J.Q. (1985) Advancing qualitative approaches. Western Journal of Research, 7, 2, 1-8. (Safety Management)(Safety Management)(Safety Management)(Safety Management)(Safety Management)

Bentil, K.K. (1990) Construction Site Safety: A Matter of Life and Costs. Cost Engineering, 32 (3), pp. 7-10.(Safety Management)(Safety Management)(Safety Management)(Safety Management)(Safety Management)

Bird, A. (2003) ―The Impact of National Culture on Collaboration‖. Proceedings of the Symposium for Collaborating Across Professional Boundaries: From to Practice. Chicago, IL. [http://www.stuart.iit.edu/ipro/papers/html/bird.htm]. (Safety Management)(Safety Management)(Safety Management)(Safety Management)(Safety Management)(Safety Management)(Safety Management)

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