Work health & safety in the retail wholesale trade2018-09-24T00:43:23+00:00

Safetysure has extensive experience in management of work health & safety in the retail wholesale trade (OHS). Safe Work Australia has reported that “every year the industry accounts for about 10,500 serious workers’ compensation claims (8% of all serious claims annually) and six traumatic work-related injury fatalities (2.5% of all traumatic injury fatalities annually).”

Our consultants have helped some of Australia’s largest organisations gain compliance in work health & safety in the retail wholesale trade through:

  • Assess OHS compliance in warehouse and retail formats;
  • Develop training packages;
  • Undertake due diligence audits;
  • Assess warehouse forklift safety including order picking;
  • Mitigate the effects of OHS / work health & safety prosecutions (including working with legal counsel to prepare mitigation cases);
  • Attendance at hearings and enquiries with clients;
  • Provision of advice regarding management of workers’ compensation cases;
  • Traffic Management planning at warehouse sites;
  • Warehouse racking inspection;
  • Investigating in-store incidents (including in-store public liability and employee safety);
  • Provision of product safety assessment services for importers of products.

At Safetysure we understand the fast-paced nature of the wholesale and retail environment in Australia and the hazards to be managed. We also have a comprehensive understanding of the issues employer’s face in managing the risks with wholesale and retail employee operations.

Work Health & Safety in the Retail Wholesale Trade Case Studies

Warehouse Worker Fatality

We were engaged by one of Australia’s big box retail organisation following a fatality of a warehouse team member. The team members had  fell from an order picker while picking larger stock items. We completed a comprehensive investigation for the organisation into the incident and identified a range of contributing factors. On presentation of our findings to the board, the organisation engaged us to establish a plan to control future risks and mitigate the impact of an impending Government prosecution.

We worked extensively with the organisation’s legal representatives to ensure that workplace health & safety systems implemented could prevent a further serious occurrence. We also briefed counsel and provided advice for the organisation’s representative prior to, and during prosecution hearings and at a coronial enquiry.

The organisation submitted sufficient evidence to the regulator and to the court to prevent a maximum penalty being applied.

Product Liability

A national retail chain engaged Safetysure following a product liability event which led to a significant house fire. The chain was a volume importer of home appliance products from China. The product imported had been tested in China against Australian and New Zealand Standards however, the product had failed in general use and the resultant effect was a house fire.

We investigated the compliance process and found significant variances between the product submitted for testing and the actual manufactured product. A range of substandard smaller diameter wiring used in the imported product had made the product prone to overheating and subsequent ignition of wiring coatings and plastics within the product.

We reviewed a range of manufacturing plants in China and found significant variances between tested products and supplied products.

Following the investigations, we assisted the client to implement a product safety regime including a product risk assessment process to evaluate compliance with “as tested” and manufacturing specifications. We also completed a range of surveillance audits in the manufacturer’s facilities to ensure compliance of individual manufacturing processes against applicable Australian Standards.

While the client received a penalty from the court in relation to the initial incident, the client mitigated the costs of the penalty through demonstrating that they had taken the nature of the incident seriously and had adequately demonstrated that systems had been implemented to prevent further recurrence.

Retail Training Systems

We were engaged by a leading retailer to review their WHS employee induction training system and assess its’ effectiveness. The organisation ran multi-site retail stores throughout Australia and New Zealand. Their smaller retail shops typically had around 4-5 staff with larger format retail sites having 20+ employees. Training was typically ran by Team-Leaders and/or store managers.

We reviewed and assessed the competencies gained from recent inductions and found that the existing processes were costly and failed to deliver the specific safety related competencies required by the organisation.

In consultation with the organisation’s training department, we designed and rolled out a new online employee induction package for the organisation. The induction package interfaced with a training management recording system (HRIS) and automatically delivered a range of self-paced online packages to new and existing employees. The significant reduction in training costs and improved productivity gains through reduction of manual recording and reporting systems resulted in gains for the organisation.

Independent assessment of induction training revealed increased employee competence and understanding of safety requirements in new employees as opposed to the traditional one-on-one delivery methods.

Safetysure understands work health & safety in the retail wholesale trade

Safetysure’s experience in managing hazards and assessing risks in the wholesale and retail trade is extensive and proven. Your company can benefit through the use of cost-effective work health & safety services that can add value to your organisation’s bottom line. We can reduce your compliance costs and mitigate your risks for less than you may think. Through our range of professional safety services we can help your business. If you’re a small business why not let us undertake a free safety check to get you on your way.

We understand retail and can ensure that your systems are aligned with retail and wholesale industry best safety practice. Retail and Wholesale business need to keep ahead of the on-going changes to the Work Health & Safety Act. We operate in Brisbane, Sydney & Melbourne. Call us today and speak with a Retail & Wholesale safety expert.

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References

Safe Work Australia: Retails Trade accessed  September 2018