Perceptions of the cost implications of health and safety failures

PROJECT AIMS: A number of UK health and safety initiatives have incorporated economic data regarding the cost of accidents and work-related ill health in an attempt to motivate employers to improve their health and safety performance. Recent attempts have also been made to encourage and facilitate organisations to start actively measuring the costs that they incur due to health and safety failures. However, there has been limited research conducted to establish organisations’ perceptions of the costs they incur due to accidents and work-related ill health or their attitudes towards, and experiences of measuring these costs. Therefore, the aims of this study were to: • Explore knowledge and awareness of the costs incurred due to workplace accidents/incidents and work-related ill health • Investigate the extent to which organisations measure the cost of their health and safety failures and explore their attitudes towards, and experiences of, measuring these costs • Provide organisations with a tool for assessing the cost of accidents/incidents (including both injury and non-injury events) and work-related ill health in real time to obtain a measure of the immediate costs incurred by organisations in a range of industry sectors • Establish whether providing organisations with a tool for measuring the cost of accidents/incidents in real time influences perceptions and changes working practices • Examine the implications that the findings have for health and safety information provision and make recommendations for future health and safety initiatives