How digital tools are improving access to highways accreditation
Achieving and maintaining industry accreditations can be tough for a smaller scale highways business.
It’s not just the costs involved; it’s also the organisational time and resources that are required to handle the accreditation process.
It can be a daunting prospect with all of the documentation required to demonstrate to auditors that effective protocols and processes are in place.
For a large highways operator, the additional administrative burden can be absorbed but it’s much harder to handle for a smaller scale business.
It places them at a significant disadvantage; barring them from certain types of contract and reducing their overall competitiveness when pitched against accredited counterparts.
It’s a problem which is being successfully tackled by the growing use of digital technology and real-time management tools within the highways sector.
Improved safety management
Health and safety is an area where the switch to digital is proving to be particularly beneficial, thanks to the automation of the admin process.
A digital workforce management system can monitor and record every step of a work process, including each safety notification, check and task that the job requires.
A system such as MyMobileWorkers allows time-stamped and annotated digital images to be integrated into employees’ workflow to verify that correct safety protocols have been carried out.
With all of this information automatically stored and instantly accessible, it allows a highways business to demonstrate the occupational health and safety management system (OHSMS) they have in place.
This is required to achieve the ISO 45001 accreditation and safe working procedures form a key part of certification for all of the National Highway Sector Schemes.
Audit friendly administration
Having detailed and accurate operational data helps to provide auditors with a reassuring level of detail that demonstrate exactly how health and safety standards are being maintained.
It’s a level of documentation that’s difficult to attain with a traditional paper-based approach to workforce management. Manually having to collect and collate information quickly becomes a drain on admin resources.
Digital management tools don’t just help a company to attain accreditation, they also play an important role in maintaining standards over time.
Typically, checks will be carried out every 12 months to ensure that standards are being maintained and some accreditations will need to be renewed after three years.
A digital approach creates a sustainable way of working in which the correct protocols are constantly managed, monitored and documented via an automated process.
It helps to level the playing field for highway companies, allowing businesses of all shapes and sizes to handle the administrative demands of industry accreditation.
By improving access to industry credentials, standards throughout the highways sector can be improved with safer and more effective ways of working being attained.