Stay ahead of the curve
is how Cavalier Tool & Manufacturing sums up its commitment to continuous improvement in health and safety. The ISO 9001:2008 registered company, located in Windsor, Ontario, applies continuous improvement principles to its employee training, equipment, processes, product mix, and more. So when Human Resources Manager Jena Reid approached Cavalier's senior leadership team last year about joining WSPS' Safety Group Advantage Program (SGAP), they supported her suggestion without reservation. "Health and safety is important to the company," says Jena. "It has to be. We’re a manufacturing facility."
While new to the company at the time, Jena was familiar with the Safety Groups program, a prerequisite for SGAP, but not with SGAP and its requirements. WSPS' Safety Group is part of a WSIB performance-based premium rebate program under which participating companies work together to implement essential elements of a successful health and safety program. Since the company is ISO certified, Cavalier wanted its health and safety system to reflect the same quality standards already in place for other aspects of its operations.
SGAP is for companies that have graduated from the Safety Groups program and want to continue building safer workplaces. "The only way to move forward is to pick up the ball and keep going," says Jena.
Under SGAP, participants develop and conduct a comprehensive audit of their health and safety management system, and use the results to implement a continual improvement plan. Successful firms are eligible for a rebate on their compensation premiums.
Audits typically help companies ensure they comply with laws and regulations, but they also help identify and mitigate risk in each work area. Health and safety audits keep employees safe, and contribute to overall organizational performance.
"Some items identified by audits may be of immediate urgency, but others will be less urgent. This program helps you prioritize these things," says Jena.
Even though Cavalier joined SGAP less than a year ago, Jena is already seeing changes. "Everyone's more aware. We've been able to identify and fill gaps in some of our policies. A big goal for Cavalier has been ramping up our in-house crane and forklift training, especially for our new and young workers. It's really critical that we train them properly and have a good game plan going forward."
What's next for Cavalier? Signing up for a new year of SGAP, starting January 1, 2018.
How we can help
Learn more about WSPS' Safety Group and Safety Group Advantage Program (SGAP)
. Deadline for applications: December 31, 2017.