Sustainability Report 2017

Occupational safety

Why this topic is important to us

Bilfinger has made it its top priority to ensure the physical integrity of all its employees. This means that the aspects of occupational safety are of key importance to whatever activities we pursue. In addition, safe work processes, the execution of occupational safety campaigns and key figures on occupational safety are important criteria that, with increasing frequency, are being surveyed by our customers prior to the awarding of orders.

The concept we pursue

The topic of occupational safety at Bilfinger is coordinated by Corporate : Because it is a central governance function, Corporate HSEQ creates the pre-requisites for a Group-wide implementation of effective management.

The measures ensuring occupational safety that Corporate HSEQ has elaborated are codified in guidelines having Group-wide application; in some instances, they are stricter than the stipulations made in national laws and requirements. In order to take special consideration of the respective working conditions, the local unit managers are responsible for adherence to local laws and occupational safety standards.

Corporate HSEQ and a network of Occupational Safety Commissioners support the operative units in adhering to the programs and measures and in developing them further. To this end, supplementary provisions and systems have been put in place in many quarters that are based on the Group principles and guidelines concerning HSEQ.

Workplace safety is the subject of the HSEQ quarterly report that is submitted to the Executive Board. The report includes all Group companies and takes into consideration all Bilfinger operations. The Executive Board is immediately informed in the case of especially severe accidents as well as on their analysis and the corrective measures taken. Occupational safety committees are available in all independent organizational units in the relevant countries in accordance with the legal provisions.

We use a management software (Synergi Life, referred to at Bilfinger as “ACTIVE”) allowing us to record, report, and process HSEQ events worldwide according to uniform standards. Accident risks, near-accidents, and incidents can be captured by executives and employees using an App, allowing them to be promptly recorded on site.

The effectiveness of our systems for occupational safety is verified by certifications in accordance with the standards 18001 and SCC/SCP (Safety Certificate Contractor), whereby approximately 82 percent of our units have at least one of these certificates. We conduct audits on all levels through internal and external agencies in order to continually analyze and improve our occupational safety measures.

Michael Bernhardt (quote-portrait)

“No order and no deadline is so important that compromises in terms of occupational safety are taken. Health is our greatest asset.”

Michael Bernhardt, CHRO Bilfinger SE

Performance indicators

In the fiscal year 2017, the Group-wide parameter (Lost Time Injury Frequency – Accidents per 1,000,000 working hours performed) was at 0.8. This represents a percentage decrease over the previous year (1.0) of 20 percent. There were no work-related accidents which resulted in fatalities.

The number of HSEQ employees () per 100 employees as of December 31, 2017 was 1.95 Group-wide.

Drones at work

Inspecting difficult to reach areas

There are a broad range of challenges related to the maintenance of offshore platforms. Among these is the fact that many areas are difficult to access and either industrial climbers or complex scaffolding are required for their inspection. Bilfinger Salamis now uses drones equipped with a high-resolution camera for this task. Using these drones, cracks, corrosion damage and leaks on seals, gas pipes or insulation can be detected quickly and reliably.

Video: Drones at work

Drones (photo)

How we want to achieve our goals

The objective pursued by all the measures we take is to further increase occupational safety. Our “Road to Zero” concept helps us to consistently reduce the number of work-related illnesses and accidents. In this regard, we seek an annual improvement of at least 10 percent as compared to the average of the previous three years.

To achieve this goal, we pursue a twofold approach: we take the technical and organizational measures this requires, and we address occupational safety again and again in a variety of communications channels in order to raise awareness for this topic. This has enabled us to significantly reduce the accident rate in the past years.

In this context, the involvement, obligation and commitment of all executives, right up to the members of the Executive Board, play an important role. Thus, the tasks of executives include so-called “safety walks” that are performed in a frequency depending on their sphere of responsibility, and that are documented. The results of these safety walks may be recorded “on the go,” as the walks are progressing, and will then be directly input into our central HSEQ software. The member of the Executive Board responsible for occupational safety, Michael Bernhardt, issues monthly “Safety Moments Circulars” to all employees in which he addresses general aspects of occupational safety.

An important measure for raising awareness regarding topics of occupational safety is our safety program “SafetyWorks!”and the information campaign that was developed in this context. With our annual Safety Award, we recognize innovative ideas to improve safety performance as well as above-average commitment. The award is intended to commend all employees and managers who have contributed to this result while also encouraging them to work towards safe working conditions and the protection of all employees’ health.

Safety Awards

Outstanding occupational safety

With the Safety Awards, every two years, Bilfinger recognizes outstanding performance in the area of occupational safety. Gold in 2017 went to Bilfinger Salamis: There, with the help of the “Safety Control Loop and League Table”, a kind of “safety league standings” was introduced. A point system evaluates the occupational safety performance that was achieved in various projects and visualizes these in a ranking. Second place was taken by Centennial Contractors Enterprises for the idea of a pocketbook that includes all important HSEQ requirements. In third place was Bilfinger Tebodin Eastern Europe where a new training module for the proper use of safety belts was developed.

Safety Awards (photo)

Wearable exoskeleton

Fewer injuries, greater productivity

The physical demands on employees can be extremely high, particularly in the area of maintenance. Valuable support in such cases can be provided by special suits which form a kind of exoskeleton. Without the need for an energy supply, these suits help to carry out tasks for which there are intensive demands on the arms and back. Bilfinger is increasingly using these suits to maintain the health of the company’s employees.

Video: Non powered exoskeleton for sustainable employment

Wearable exoskeleton (photo)
Health, Safety, Environment & Quality
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Health, Safety, Environment & Quality
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Occupational Health and Safety Assessment Series
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Lost Time Injury Frequency Rate
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Full-time equivalent
Key figure which shows how many full-time positions exist based on a mixed calculation with part-time employees
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