Why don’t accidents improve operations?

When there is an accident within an organisation there is usually an accident investigation (and if there isn’t, there should be). So, why is it that the findings from the majority of accident investigations are not fed back into the business improvement processes? According to the statistics only 14% of organisations actively do this; what about the other 86%?

An accident means that something has gone wrong, or an accident would not have happened. If no change takes place then there is a likelihood that there will be a repeat of that situation sometime in the future.

Findings from accidents can create business improvement – for instance if someone slips from a ladder whilst cleaning windows, examining the window cleaning process could result in the purchase of a cherrypicker – allowing the window cleaner access to more windows, faster, more safely and, consequently, increasing operational efficiency and making the window cleaning process more profitable.

If your organisation fulfils its statutory duty to carry out a risk assessment when things change – consider how this might produce information that can fuel business improvement and impact on your bottom line.