Behaviour-based safety (BBS): a construction industry's perspective

The behaviour related approach to dealing with occupational safety and health (OSH) has been shown to be valuable and as a result many construction organisations employ this method to achieve robust safety management systems. Behaviour-based safety (BBS) has various elements and comes in different forms and designs; and different organisations pay more attention to different elements. As a result, organisations typically give their behaviour-based safety programmes (BBSP) different names and pride themselves for achieving high safety standards because of the aspects of behavioural safety that they focus on. However, it is unclear as to which specific aspects of such programmes are the keys to success and which are of secondary importance to improving OSH. This paper presents the findings of a desk study of the top 100 UK and USA construction organisations (contractors and consultants) ranked by turnover; this involved a comparative analysis of BBSPs that led to the development of seven major themes. This study reveals the need to encourage smaller companies to undertake BBS as well as understand employees’ ideals so that they can be effectively and efficiently supported. This study is part of a three-year doctoral research programme that investigates the human aspect of OSH.