Limits...
The Shelf Life of a Safety Climate Assessment: How Long Until the Relationship with Safety-Critical Incidents Expires?

Bergman ME, Payne SC, Taylor AB, Beus JM - J Bus Psychol (2014)

Bottom Line: The common yearly count of incidents would make it seem that more severe incidents cannot be predicted by safety climate and also fails to show the strongest predictive effects of less severe incidents.This research is the first to examine assumptions regarding aggregation periods when constructing safety-related incident rates.Our work guides organizations in planning their survey program, recommending more frequent measurement of safety climate.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Psychology, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX USA.

ABSTRACT

Purpose: This study investigates safety climate as both a leading (climate → incident) and a lagging (incident → climate) indicator of safety-critical incidents. This study examines the "shelf life" of a safety climate assessment and its relationships with incidents, both past and future, by examining series of incident rates in order to determine when these predictive relationships expire.

Design/methodology/approach: A survey was conducted at a large, multinational chemical manufacturing company, with 7,467 responses at 42 worksites in 12 countries linked to over 14,000 incident records during the 2 years prior and 2 years following the survey period. Regressions revealed that safety climate predicts incidents of varying levels of severity, but it predicts the most severe incidents over the shortest period of time. The same is true for incidents predicting safety climate, with more severe incidents having a shorter predictive window. For the most critical relationship (climate predicting more severe incidents), the ability of a safety climate assessment to predict incidents expires after 3 months.

Implications: The choice of aggregation period in constructing incident rates is essential in understanding the safety climate-incident relationship. The common yearly count of incidents would make it seem that more severe incidents cannot be predicted by safety climate and also fails to show the strongest predictive effects of less severe incidents.

Originality/value: This research is the first to examine assumptions regarding aggregation periods when constructing safety-related incident rates. Our work guides organizations in planning their survey program, recommending more frequent measurement of safety climate.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Accumulation of safety incidents to create incident rate variables
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Fig1: Accumulation of safety incidents to create incident rate variables

Mentions: Incident rates were calculated by counting the number of incidents in the time period and dividing by the site population for each of the four included incident levels of severity. Two series of incident rates were calculated, one for lagging and one for leading relationships, for each of the four incident levels. Essentially, month-long blocks were successively added to create a series of incident rates that included incidents further and further in time from the survey assessment period (Fig. 1). In the lagging indicator analyses, the incident rate is the predictor variable. The first incident rate calculated included only the incidents in the single month prior to the safety climate assessment; the 2-month lagging predictor calculated the incident rate for the 2 months prior to the safety climate assessment, and so forth until all 23 months prior to the survey period were included.5 In the leading indicator analyses, the incident rate is the criterion variable. The first incident rate included the single month following the survey assessment period, the second included the 2 months after the assessment period, and so forth until all 24 months of incident data were accumulated into a criterion variable. Thus, there are 23 incident rates for each severity level as predictors and 24 incident rates for each severity level as criteria of safety climate. Table 1 summarizes the incident data for each month individually.Fig. 1


The Shelf Life of a Safety Climate Assessment: How Long Until the Relationship with Safety-Critical Incidents Expires?

Bergman ME, Payne SC, Taylor AB, Beus JM - J Bus Psychol (2014)

Accumulation of safety incidents to create incident rate variables
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4232754&req=5

Fig1: Accumulation of safety incidents to create incident rate variables
Mentions: Incident rates were calculated by counting the number of incidents in the time period and dividing by the site population for each of the four included incident levels of severity. Two series of incident rates were calculated, one for lagging and one for leading relationships, for each of the four incident levels. Essentially, month-long blocks were successively added to create a series of incident rates that included incidents further and further in time from the survey assessment period (Fig. 1). In the lagging indicator analyses, the incident rate is the predictor variable. The first incident rate calculated included only the incidents in the single month prior to the safety climate assessment; the 2-month lagging predictor calculated the incident rate for the 2 months prior to the safety climate assessment, and so forth until all 23 months prior to the survey period were included.5 In the leading indicator analyses, the incident rate is the criterion variable. The first incident rate included the single month following the survey assessment period, the second included the 2 months after the assessment period, and so forth until all 24 months of incident data were accumulated into a criterion variable. Thus, there are 23 incident rates for each severity level as predictors and 24 incident rates for each severity level as criteria of safety climate. Table 1 summarizes the incident data for each month individually.Fig. 1

Bottom Line: The common yearly count of incidents would make it seem that more severe incidents cannot be predicted by safety climate and also fails to show the strongest predictive effects of less severe incidents.This research is the first to examine assumptions regarding aggregation periods when constructing safety-related incident rates.Our work guides organizations in planning their survey program, recommending more frequent measurement of safety climate.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Psychology, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX USA.

ABSTRACT

Purpose: This study investigates safety climate as both a leading (climate → incident) and a lagging (incident → climate) indicator of safety-critical incidents. This study examines the "shelf life" of a safety climate assessment and its relationships with incidents, both past and future, by examining series of incident rates in order to determine when these predictive relationships expire.

Design/methodology/approach: A survey was conducted at a large, multinational chemical manufacturing company, with 7,467 responses at 42 worksites in 12 countries linked to over 14,000 incident records during the 2 years prior and 2 years following the survey period. Regressions revealed that safety climate predicts incidents of varying levels of severity, but it predicts the most severe incidents over the shortest period of time. The same is true for incidents predicting safety climate, with more severe incidents having a shorter predictive window. For the most critical relationship (climate predicting more severe incidents), the ability of a safety climate assessment to predict incidents expires after 3 months.

Implications: The choice of aggregation period in constructing incident rates is essential in understanding the safety climate-incident relationship. The common yearly count of incidents would make it seem that more severe incidents cannot be predicted by safety climate and also fails to show the strongest predictive effects of less severe incidents.

Originality/value: This research is the first to examine assumptions regarding aggregation periods when constructing safety-related incident rates. Our work guides organizations in planning their survey program, recommending more frequent measurement of safety climate.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus