Contractor Management
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8 May 2018

Knowing your contractor management obligations

Effectively managing contractors is a real challenge. However, as with most things, a common-sense approach can help avoid the majority of potential problems! 

Trying to navigate contractor management for your organisation can seem overwhelming. Even after you identify all of the laws and regulations that apply to your organisation (namely, The Work Health and Safety Act 2011) and set up your operations accordingly, new ones are brought in and often the old ones can change. 

How can you effectively follow all of these requirements? With contractor management, the problem isn’t what you have to do, it’s how you choose to do it. 

First things first, you need to know who counts as a ‘worker’ in your organisation. It’s a broader category than you might think, referring to “a person who carries out work in any capacity for an organisation.” This includes contractors, sub-contractors and their employees, as under The Work Health and Safety Act organisations are accountable to manage workplace health and safety for workers up to three degrees removed.

Next, before even pre-qualifying contractors, your organisation needs to elect a designated employee/s who can be accountable for managing contractors. This person must be able to provide documentation of the organisation’s workplace health and safety program, showing just as much compliance oversight for contractors as for regular employees. 

Following this, structuring contracts for workers is one of – it not – the most important element of contractor management. 

Contracts require checkpoints that line up with the milestones of the work, along with a review process to be carried out as each checkpoint comes up. The review is intended to make sure the work is consistently supervised throughout the course of the project, and that the terms of the agreement are being followed. Contracts should also include an assessment process for when the work is completed and plans to account for changes in the work environment. 

All contractors on your site will then need to go through induction training. This isn’t just about liability or fulfilling a requirement; this is where your organisation sets the standard for workplace safety. It’s crucial, at this stage, to signal the importance of safety to your organisation. 

Contractor management comes down to formalising a common-sense approach in your processes, backing it up with the appropriate documentation and extending your practices to additional worker categories (including contractors, subcontractors and their staff). 

If you require assistance managing your contractors, in particular, streamlining the compliance verification of your third-party contractors, then iPRO is the answer! Automating contractor verification, iPRO helps achieve unprecedented levels of compliance across the entire supply network. To reduce risk, build trusted partnerships and achieve real-time transparency, get in touch with the iPRO team today!

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