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The Making of a Nationally Recognized Safety Innovation

Go behind the scenes of the development of our digital safety platform and tool for remote worksites, which earned us the prestigious National Safety Council Green Cross for Safety Innovation Award.

Amanda is a Certified Hazardous Materials Manager (CHMM), Health and Safety Technician (CHST), and Construction and Certified Safety Profession (CSP) with more than 20 years of experience as a government contractor. She has worked on environmental and fuels projects as a project manager, site safety officer, construction quality control officer, and technical manager.THIS WEEK’S CONTRIBUTOR:
Amanda Welch, CHMM, CHST, CSP | Project Manager
APTIM | Government Services
Amanda.Welch@APTIM.com

Amanda is a Certified Hazardous Materials Manager (CHMM), Health and Safety Technician (CHST), and Construction and Certified Safety Profession (CSP) with more than 20 years of experience as a government contractor. She has worked on environmental and fuels projects as a project manager, site safety officer, construction quality control officer, and technical manager.

 

The Making of a Nationally Recognized Safety Innovation

This year APTIM was one of three finalists for the National Safety Council (NSC) Green Cross for Safety Innovation Award, which “recognizes a researcher, corporation, or organization that has achieved success addressing a long-held challenge in safety and a new or novel approach.” As part of the development team, APTIM Safety Manager Terry Powell and I attended the NSC’s Green Cross Celebration awards ceremony, where we learned APTIM won!

Learn how the APTIM team developed the now nationally recognized APTIM Maintenance Platform and APTIM Incident Management Tool and about the night of our big win.

Development

For more than three years, many APTIM teammates were involved in the development of these tools. It all started with a contract requirement to have a management system for the 90,000 assets we are responsible for maintaining. You can’t effectively do that on a spreadsheet. As we gained additional task orders (more sites), we really needed a way to manage all that data that still allowed us to grow.

APTIM Deputy Program Manager Pat Newberry, who masterminded the development of these tools for the Recurring Maintenance & Minor Construction program, worked to find a system that could support our program. As we would try one system after the other, Pat would send out spreadsheets of data with hundreds and thousands of lines for review.

Anyone involved in the program was asked to help review and quality control data. The engineers were asked to review technical items and suggest what the tool should track or capture. Safety managers were asked what types of information needed to be collected to meet regulatory and contract requirements.

Oftentimes, requests would be made to the developers, and it would take some time to figure out if the request was possible within the system. Then, “automagically,” the requests or changes would appear and make things more streamlined or easier!

Impact

While it started out as an operational tool, we worked to make it a safety tool.

  • Plan Grid allows us to electronically sign activity hazard and job hazard analyses in the field. No more printing hardcopies, getting wet signatures, or sending the hardcopies back to the office. Forms are now signed almost instantaneously and, most importantly, stored in our system. The safety managers love it!
  • Then Maintenance Connection (MC) provides electronic access to everyone’s safety certifications in our program. The tracking system allows us to query who has a specific certification and when it is due for renewal. Construction managers can pull certifications at any time, easily responding to the Occupational Safety and Health Organization or any other regulatory body. MC also stores all the pieces of a service order package for the safety managers to review, as well as their signed document.
  • MatterPort uses 3D data to allow engineers, construction managers, and safety managers who often work from home to see sites hundreds or thousands of miles away. It improves the communication between these teammates as they can essentially walk through sites from their living rooms.

Winning Moment

The night of the awards ceremony, Terry and I reviewed the write-ups for the Safety Advocate and Safety Excellence Awards and correctly picked the winners. When it came to the Safety Innovation Award, the last award of the evening, we read our competitors’ write-ups and thought another would win.

I think we were both very surprised when APTIM’s name was called as the winner. I did not even have my speech out of my bag and had to grab it as I walked to the podium. After finishing my speech, we were greeted with high-fives from our tablemates. A representative from Walgreens, who won the Safety Excellence Award, came over to talk with us, and Terry and I took a few extra pictures.

At the office the next day, there was a feeling of excitement. Lots of people came to congratulate us on the win. There were lots of jokes about me being famous, as there was a picture on APTNet, our internal communications platform. Developing this platform and tool was truly a team effort; I was just the lucky one who got to represent our program. I am thankful for the opportunity, and I hope the whole team feels proud of this national honor!

Safety at APTIM

At APTIM, safety is not just a goal. It is our culture, our entire way of doing business. APTIM conducts business with honesty and honor to promote the safety and security of our people while preserving the environment and maintaining quality. We live our values by leading and empowering our workforce to be incident free, involving employees in decisions to identify and manage risks, as well as providing programs and training to promote and enhance our safety culture.

APTIM. Expect the Extraordinary.

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