The iSafe Program
Watch the video below to find out all about the iSafe Program and how it works.
The iSafe Program was established in Australia in 2012 to provide members of APSCo Australia with a convenient and reliable way to meet their legal obligations under the WHS legislation in relation to their on-hired workers. In the past, On-Hire Firms tended to make their own arrangements to visit and assess each Host Client, but this caused problems as resources were stretched, and Host Clients became frustrated with the many On-Hire Firms asking all the same questions.
The iSafe Program is a solution to these problems. One visit is conducted by qualified and experienced safety professionals, and the assessment report is shared with all those in the Program.
The Program has been extremely successful. Neary 4000 iSafe reports have been written for more than 1000 Host Clients around Australia and New Zealand. In 2015 the Program was fully outsourced to Certex International Pty Ltd to operate, and in 2016 the Program was extended to include New Zealand. Initially the program was for IT contractors placed into low risk office environments, but now the iSafe Program is being expanded into higher risk areas including construction, manufacturing and health sectors. It is also being expanded to include organisations outside the recruitment/ on-hire sector such as service providers which send their workers out to their clients, and organisations which seek regular assessments across their own network of sites and offices.
Purpose of the iSafe Program
Under legislation in Australia and New Zealand, organisations have a responsibility for the health and safety for all of their employees and contractors (workers). Where more than one organisation is involved, each PCBU shares a duty of care. This can occur where an organisation (On-Hire Firm) engages a worker to work at the site of their client (Host Client). Some situations can become quite complex with various PCBUs involved such as recruiters and on-hire agencies, host clients, contracting companies, contractor management organisations, payroll service providers, professional services & managed solution providers.
The purpose of the iSafe Program is twofold – firstly to assess the level of health and safety at the Host Client site where the worker has been placed to work, and secondly to demonstrate the co-operation and communication between PCBU's.
How it works
When an On-Hire Firm places a worker with a Host Client they may first check the iSafe library of reports for a recent assessment of the Host Client. There are usually two types of reports: a review of the host’s system of safety including policies, documentation and records; and an inspection of the safety observed at the work site. A Host Client will usually have a single document review but may have many site inspections if they have many branches, offices or work sites.
If a current iSafe report is not available the On-Hire Firm can request iSafe to visit the Host Client and prepare the report.
On review of the report the On-Hire Firm may be confident the Host Client provides a safe work environment or may contact the Host Client to discuss any concerns or issues the report has identified. The decision on whether or not to place their workers with the Host Client and to co-operate with the Host Client to resolve any problems remains with the On-Hire Firm; the findings in the Safe report are an important input into this decision process.
Reports are updated regularly, based on the level of risk assessed. Office locations would generally be rated as Low Risk (update 24-26 months), Medium Risk (update 12 months) or High Risk (update 6 months). Risk levels for non-office environments such as construction/manufacturing sites and health facilities, would also include Serious Risk (update 3 months) and Critical Risk (update less than 3 months).