The energy provider refusing to be complacent

Orsted draws energy production from various sources, with biomass power plants playing a pivotal role. These facilities play a crucial part in ensuring that the Danish population and industries receive a consistent supply of energy, and Orsted has their employees to thank for keeping this functional.

However, upon fulfilling their responsibilities, risks and hazards are usually present. With a goal of making their work environment safer than ever by keeping incidents under control, Orsted aimed to formulate and align everybody’s understanding of safety and provide tools to assess risks and conduct toolbox talks.


Defining the mission: Orsted’s Initiative

Ørsted’s own employees as well as external workers are the ones who take care of the technical maintenance and daily operation. Many of these tasks encompass an element of hazards and risk. These hazards were quite similar to those experienced by maritime clients, managed through Green-Jakobsen’s programs and courses.

Specifically, findings from the data gathered by Orsted revealed a lack of distinction between the assessment of risks in everyday low-risk jobs and the assessment of risks in high-risk jobs. This meant that all jobs had a tedious administrative process, which, upon evaluation, did not necessarily improve nor promote the company safety culture.

Two courses were designed and rolled out to operational employees and external suppliers to provide a set of tools and principles for risk assessment and toolbox talk:

1. A risk assessment course which addresses the issue on understanding risks and hazards and the efficient way to make a risk assessment

2. A toolbox talk course which equips workers on the behaviour required for supporting the good toolbox talk , The aim of these courses is to enhance the capabilities of the participants and enable them to make well-informed risk assessments to handle safety risks by analysing the threats, vulnerabilities, and consequences; and with such knowledge, make sound decisions on how to mitigate them.

The toolbox talk course outlines the required behaviour to conduct and participate in an effective toolbox talk that can help the employees to become active contributors to ensure a safe execution of the work tasks.


The initiative coming to life: Orsted paving the way to a safer workplace

The two courses have a process-oriented approach, wherein about 400 employees and external suppliers have been enrolled.

Much emphasis was placed on the toolbox talk course. Important elements in this course is to encourage discussions, where the participants solve practical exercises in groups and participate in role plays. The course materials build on Ørsted’s safety concepts and core values – Trust, Openness, and Learning –and aims at embedding these in the behaviours the participants display in their toolbox talks.

According to the new assessment plan, for high-risk jobs, a comprehensive documented risk assessment would remain mandatory and must be raised during the toolbox talk with the team before executing a task. This will ensure that all workers are aligned with their observation and mitigation strategies.

On the other hand, for low-risk jobs, workers involved are expected to discuss hazards, risks, and other safety concerns verbally with their team before starting their jobs or tasks.

On top of the role plays the participants were being taught how to listen actively.. Through active listening activities the participants are expected to learn and understand how these soft skills will aid in achieving the goal of having a positive and open knowledge sharing process during the toolbox talk.

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Bjarke Jakobsen
Bjarke Jakobsen
Partner and Senior Consultant

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