Safetip #34: Risk Rating for Contractor Work to be Performed

June 22, 2016
By Jean-Grégoire Manoukian

This week’s Safetip is about and rating the risk of the work to be performed by contractors. The best practice is highlighted in a white paper by the National Safety Council’s Campbell Institute on best practices of 14 world-class organizations in EHS around the management of contractor and supplier safety.

Place Contractors in a Predetermined Risk Category

According to the white paper, 9 out of 14 research participants evaluate the risk of the work to be performed by contractors. This is achieved typically through a risk matrix. Contractors are placed in a predetermined risk category, and each risk category may require contractors to take additional steps regarding their safety procedures and programs. Here are some examples of the different methods used by research participants to rate the risk of the work to be performed by contractors:

  • An initial risk assessment based on the broad scope of work is performed, followed by a second assessment based on the contractor’s detailed work procedure. Point values are assigned for severity, frequency and probability to calculate the risk associated with a given project. Contractors involved in projects with higher risk ratings must provide additional written safety programs, or they must describe work plans to mitigate risks.
  • Contractors are categorized as “Higher Liability” or “Lower Liability”, based on the type of work involved (e.g. work at eight feet or higher, and use of scaffolding, power tools, cutting equipment and other heavy machinery).
  • Risk is assessed in terms of insurance liability and the type of work involved.
  • In-depth risk assessment is performed for larger capital projects, and based on the assessment contractors may be required to conduct hazardous job meetings and job walkthroughs. In some cases, different methods for completing the job may be explored.
  • Projects are assigned a “prequalification action level” based on the risk level of the work. Projects deemed to have a high prequalification action level require prequalification through a third party.

By assessing the risk of the work to be performed by a contractor before the actual start of a project, organizations can determine if additional safety measures and precautions should be taken.

Additional Safetips

Here are links to additional Safetips on contractor safety:

Visit Enablon Insights again next Wednesday for a brand new Safetip!