Behavior Based Human Performance Safety

1. Policy

a) The purpose of this policy is to ensure the safety of all ESCO Group employees through positive reinforcement of their observed safe work practices and behaviors.  Employees receive extensive classroom training pertaining to applicable safety standards and safe work practices. Employees are then monitored in production and construction areas for applying the desired safety behaviors and processes.

2. Observation Process 

a) ESCO Group supervisors and safety directors will regularly observe employee’s safe work practices while on the job.  Adherence to safe work practices and industry best practices will be coached and reinforced with all ESCO Group employees during the observation process.  

b) The following steps will be followed by ESCO Group employees to execute the observation process:  

i. Employees shall receive training upon hire and on a regular basis pertaining to the process of ESCO Group’s behavior based and human performance policies and procedures.  

ii. Supervisors and safety department members will perform written safety observations of employees performing work to identify safe and unsafe acts.  Documentation shall be recorded on the most current ESCO Group observation form.  

iii. Observations are to be completed in the work area to allow for all environmental contributing factors to be taken into consideration in the employee’s decision making process. 

iv. Employees that are observed by the auditor shall be made aware of the observation prior to commencement.  Observations are to be interactive between observer and employee performing the observed task.   

v. Observers are to provide clear and immediate correction for any action or condition that may cause bodily injury or illness to an employee or bystander.    

vi. Observers shall provide feedback to observed employees upon completion of observation.  Feedback shall be given for desired behaviors and corrections for behaviors that place employees at risk of injury or process interruption. 

3. Observation Data Collection and Action Plan 

a) ESCO Group safety directors will compile all safe and unsafe acts from the written observation reports and create a trend analysis to monitor activities that are done safely and unsafely.  Trends, both safe and unsafe, will be shared with all employees of a particular job site or department to allow for a focused training.   

b) Focused training will be administered by the ESCO Group Safety Department or supervisor for unsafe trends to allow for reinforcement of the desired behavior and to prevent further risk.  Hazard elimination will be the first method of correction used for the focused trainings.  

c) High risk unsafe behavior trends will be addressed immediately, followed by a prioritized list of unsafe behaviors based on a risk analysis performed by the ESCO Group Safety Department. 

d) The ESCO Group Safety Department will develop focused training to specifically address areas of concerns in a prioritized manner addressed above.  This shall be completed weekly during the regularly scheduled weekly safety trainings.  High risk unsafe behaviors will be justification for enacting the “Stop Work” program and immediately training employees. 

4. Observation Points of Emphasis

a) ESCO Group observers will be trained to identify the hazards and safe work practices below and will be able to correct unsafe behaviors to align with desired behaviors.  

i. Line of fire

ii. Body position (ergonomics)

iii. Personal protective equipment

iv. Hazardous energy control

v. Permit use

vi. Job briefing execution 

vii. Work area inspection

viii. Mechanical equipment use

ix. Knife use

x. Material handling

xi. Lighting/lamination 

xii. Work pace

xiii. Electrical safe work practices

xiv. Arc flash hazard analysis 

xv. Shock hazard analysis 

xvi. Barricade establishment and use

xvii. Fall hazard mitigation 

xviii. Personal fall protection use

xix. Communication process and plan 

xx. Human performance process

xxi. Mobile traffic control (struck by)

5. Human Performance Process

a) ESCO Group applies the Human Performance Process to all employees.  The purpose of this program is to acknowledge that employees encounter a constantly changing work environment. As conditions of the project or conditions for the employee change the employee’s work focus or ability will change.  The goal of this program to assure that the employee remains in a combination of the below mentioned Skill Based and Rule Based Performance Modes to allow for optimal safety performance.  Employees are to enact the “Stop Work” program once they are in Knowledge Based Performance Mode. 

ESCO Group employees will receive annual training for the Human Performance process through the scheduled weekly safety trainings. The training shall include description of the three Human Performance Modes, Error Traps, Triggers and Stop Criteria.   

b) Employees perform tasks in three different Human Performance Modes: 

i. Skill Based Performance Mode 

ii. Rule Based Performance Mode 

iii. Knowledge Based Performance Mode 

Skill Based Performance Mode
Skill Based Performance Modes are routine actions in a familiar situation. They are highly practiced actions (routine activity) usually executed from memory without significant conscious thought. It is the behavior governed by preprogrammed instructions developed by either training or experience. 

Rule Based Performance Mode
Rule Based Performance Modes are the prepackaged actions determined by recognition of familiar problem situations (step-by-step procedures). Task performed by using existing rules from procedures, training or experience. Its behavior based upon selection of stored rules derived from one’s recognition of the situation. Rule Based Performance Mode usually occurs from problems discovered during a task usually requiring a different skill than what was planned.

Knowledge Based Performance Mode
Knowledge Based Performance Modes are unfamiliar situations that exist, requiring the worker to apply analytical skills and judgement. It is a behavior in response to an unfamiliar situation relying on one’s understanding and recollection of knowledge of the system. Knowledge Based Performance Modes are the opposite of the way they sound.  It is the lack of knowledge to a particular task or situation.
The errors that follow Knowledge Based Performance Modes are the flaws in problem-solving and decision making based on insufficient information or lack of knowledge. Examples of Knowledge Based Performance Modes are any situation that you encounter that you have never completed or have never been assigned to complete. They could range from working on an instrument or building new switch gear that you have never seen before. The way we combat Knowledge Based Performance Modes is by stopping and collaborating or using the problem-solving technique.

6. Human Performance Process: Error Traps, Safety Triggers and Stop Criteria

a) Error Traps

i. Error traps are single or multiple circumstances that can result in an undesirable consequence such as an accident.  Recognition of the error traps and enacting the “Stop Work” program are key elements of the Human Performance training concepts.

ii. Examples of Error Traps:

1. Stress (work or non-work related)- Mind off task

2. High work load or Multi-tasking 

3. Deadlines and time pressure

4. Poor communication- Not a clear understanding of task

5. Vague or poor written instruction or guidance 

6. Overconfidence- Complacency

7. Infrequent or unfamiliar task

8. Distractions- Physical or Mental

9. Return to work after away for extended period longer than normal off shift i.e. vacation or illness 

10. Fatigue- Extended shift or more demanding shift  

b) Safety Triggers

i. Safety triggers are used to enact the “Stop Work” program.  Triggers are recognized as moments that should alarm the employee performing the task to “Stop” and refocus and reassess.  

ii. Examples of Safety Triggers:

1. “Gut-feeling” that something isn’t quite correct

2. Deviation from best practice or procedure 

3. Working in “Knowledge Base Performance Mode”

4. Change in working environment 

5. Unfamiliar task

6. No procedure or best practice exists 

c) Stop Criteria 

i. Stop criteria are tied closely to safety triggers. Once a trigger is recognized a “Stop Work” procedure shall be put into place until the task is reassessed and the hazard is eliminated. 

7. Human Performance Process Tools

a) The processes and procedures below are tools designed to help employees the Human Error concepts targeted by the Human Performance Process. 

i. Examples of Human Performance Process Tools:

1. Stop Work Program

a. Stop work when any of the listed Error Traps and Safety Triggers are recognized.  Reassess and eliminate the hazard before proceeding. 

2. Three Way Communication 

a. Sender provides message/desired action 

b. Receiver repeats message/desired action

c. Sender confirms message/desired action 

3. Verbalize-Point-Touch 

a. Verbalize intended action

b. Point at the correct equipment/component 

c. Touch equipment/component and complete identified action

d. Verify desired outcome of action 

4. Job briefing (Communication tool and task assessment)

a. ESCO Group’s form

b. Client’s form

8. Conclusion 

a) Through the use of Behavioral Based and Human Performance safety concepts in addition to the standards based compliance education ESCO Group approaches employee safety to first eliminate the hazard to the employee.  Human Error contributes to all accidents and incidents, knowing this ESCO Group builds systems and procedures to safeguard employees when they do commit error.