Has Time & Attendance software finally come of age in the construction sector?

The construction sector more than ever, requires the precise management of the workforce and their work load. As a Project Manager you know it is essential to get the most out of your team, albeit your own workforce or more commonly as is the case on larger projects – contractors.

It is essential to keep track of the workforces’ comings and goings on to and off the site – not only to ensure health and safety messages have been received and understood, but also to ensure time and attendance corresponds with project deliverables and payments.

The manual methods of workforce management are outdated and don’t work without a great deal of administration involvement. Also we need to keeping in mind the management’s demand for instant information required in this fast-paced frenetic industry. To deliver on this need, there is no better choice than to incorporate time and attendance software within the management programs and procedures.

Here’s how time and attendance software has revolutionised the conventional workforce management in the construction industry to date:

  • Allows attendance recording and time keeping on one or more sites across a project.
  • Cost and budget analysis, identifying high cost areas and cutting down on redundant and extra expenditures.
  • Track project progress and performance at regular time intervals to keep up with a sustained growth and productivity schedule.
  • Can be linked to access rights – should workers have a black mark against their record or have not received a particular safety or induction briefing.
  • Allows statistical analysis of open and closed projects in terms of time and efficient completion. This is very useful when planning future projects and costings.
  • Keeping an accurate and error-free recording of each employee for the work done, working hours and overtime, and calculating their wage and compensation as per their recorded data.

This is just a start of technological adoption in the sector, as more cost and time saving innovations enter the industry and revolutionise the way the workforce is managed both onsite and in between jobs.

Mosaic Tally System is an attendance monitoring system designed to take the strain out of construction site access. The system is smart card operated allowing for significant throughput of staff and visitors with a scan of the card. Entry is dependent upon appropriate skills, which are checked against worker records. This innovative system offers the user a cost-effective solution to the complex issue of site access and workforce tracking.

Five construction admin challenges, that traditionally revolves around maintaining safe sites

Businesses in the construction industry face a different set of challenges than your average company. Take one aspect: safety. Most businesses face a relatively predictable set of safety issues. In construction due to the nature of building, safety has to be of paramount importance, otherwise workforce welfare could be compromised.

Organising the safety of the workforce can be a massive challenge, particularly on large projects and Joint Ventures (JV), particularly if traditional methods of paper and spreadsheets are employed. Let’s look at some of the most common admin challenges, and how you can manage them more effectively using Mosaic.

#1 Inducting the workforce
In the construction sector, it is vital for each member of the workforce to have a briefing prior to a project starting, so they hit the ground running and know the potential hazards on site. From an administrative perspective, this is a logistical nightmare to get your own workforce and contractors booked on to class slots.

It involves a lot of skilled admin to collate all the contacts and chasing up to ensure everyone receives that all important first induction.

#2 Verifying subcontractors
CSCS verification is a notorious admin burden for contractors – Failure to efficiently check cards and qualifications can result in down time while correct paperwork is produced. Once in-situ keeping on top of the expiry date of qualifications is difficult without the correct software.

#3 Managing plant and maintenance
If your company uses a lot of its own tools, then managing your maintenance responsibilities can be something of an administrative nightmare. You must make sure you meet your contractual obligations while ensuring that testing schedules are managed effectively.

Similarly, plant management can be just as time-consuming and fiddly. You need to manage their use, maintenance and costs – which usually involves a lot of paperwork. Look for some construction asset management software which includes the ability to manage maintenance and plant, if your company struggles with these tasks. By accurately recording these aspects of your business, you also help protect your company during contract disputes.

#4 Ongoing safety briefings
Toolbox talks and daily safety briefings are now common place on most UK sites. But how do Site Managers know if everyone has received them. The simple answer is they generally do not, as there is a time lag between paperwork returning to the office and checks being completed.

#5 Workforce Payment
Ensuring that timesheets are in on time and accurately filled in correctly currently costs the UK construction industry millions in process and human errors. This is usually a paperwork driven exercise that gets approvals from Supervisors once completed further down the chain. It is prone to delays and inaccuracies. Surely there is a better way to track time & attendance.

Sum-up
There’s no doubt that running a modern-day construction business involves plenty of admin – but instead of cutting corners (and risking legal disputes later), you can use today’s technology to turn stacks of paperwork into manageable tasks.

Looking to upgrade your construction health and safety systems now with Mosaic.

Get in touch to see how we can help you identify areas of concern and reduce administration inefficiencies on your construction site or project.

 

construction site

Mosaic supports new ‘Spotlight on illegal workers’ campaign

Interesting to read on www.installeronline.co.uk that a new national campaign ‘Spotlight on…illegal workers’ has been launched by the Considerate Constructors Scheme. They undertake 18,000 monitoring visits to construction sites, companies and suppliers every year and according to December 2016 results a lot more could be done by the industry to tackle this problem.

The survey revealed:

  • 93% agreed illegal working could be better tackled in the construction industry
  • 81% would say illegal working has been on the rise over the past 15 years
  • 61% admitted they have not received – or rarely receive – information on illegal working
  • 33% suspected a chance that illegal working had been present at a previous or current employer
  • 30% agreed that health and safety was placed at greatest risk as a result of illegal working.

‘Spotlight on…illegal workers’ provides the construction industry with an essential resource to increase understanding of the risks posed by illegal construction workers, and what can be done to tackle the problem.

the Scheme introduced new questions in the 2017 Monitors’ Checklist to encourage sites, companies and supply chains to examine how they are ensuring the legitimacy of their workforce:

  • Are there processes in place to ensure subcontractors (and subsequent subcontractors) are conducting right to work checks?
  • Are physical spot checks conducted to ensure minimum standards of right to work checks are taking place within the supply chain?

Considerate Constructors Scheme Chief Executive Edward Hardy said: “Ensuring the legitimacy of the workforce is one of the key challenges facing the construction industry today. The industry must work together to ensure that checks for workers’ legitimacy becomes firmly entrenched within all construction activity across the UK.

“By challenging sites to explore how they currently assess and monitor the legitimacy of their workforce, the Scheme believes that in the not-so-distant future, all registered sites, companies and suppliers will have robust procedures in place.

Help is at hand. Mosaic Tally, sometimes known as the time and attendance module, is an easy plug and play system that means all workers scan onto and off the site using their smart cards (including CSCS cards). Tally can be set up to work over multiple access points, allowing your workers and contractors alike to be monitored over large geographical areas. This information can easily be retrieved from the system in the form of a report and effectively means all workers are vetting before given a card.

To find out more about our Tally system follow the link

10 questions you are unlikely to hear a Site Manager ask on a Mosaic project

We take a look at how the deployment of a Mosaic Management System can change site working practices and worker behaviour. Below are ten questions that you would be unlikely to hear from Site Managers, once the Mosaic suite of products is fully operational on site:

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1. “Who has actually been inducted?” …I will need to gather all the paperwork together…

Mosaic Induction Manager allows all those participating in the induction process to book themselves onto the class. The induction can then be delivered on-line, off-line or a combination of both depending on client requirements. Once finished the worker is registered against their record as having completing the induction.

Mosaic Induction Manager - Onboarding and Inductions both online and offline
Mosaic Induction Manager – Allowing Inductions options both on-line and off-line

Site Managers can easily run a report to check who has received their induction and therefore is eligible for site access. Paperwork and spreadsheets are no longer necessary, saving considerable administration time.

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2. “Is that worker qualified to do that?”… Someone could get hurt here…

Depending upon client requirements, all qualifications can be checked before access to site is

construction worker using dangerous equipmentallowed. Evidence of this is appended to a worker’s record. Each worker is assigned a role, that they must have the right qualifications and experience to perform, before they are issues with their site smart card.

3. “Where is the contractor qualification certificate evidence?”… I cannot find copies…

All certificate and any qualification evidence is scanned and uploaded against a worker record. This can easily be view via a desktop.

No more photocopying of certificates etc., cluttering up site offices.

What makes a safe worker?
What makes a safe worker?

4. “Can I check your CSCS card is in date?”… I am worried about fake cards also… 

As a CSCS IT partner we have access to their database to check worker CSCS cards are in date and not fake. Once checked, workers can continue to use their CSCS on site or alternatively a Mosaic Smartcard can be issued. When the CSCS card expires, an ‘administrator’ is notified, who can inform the worker to get it renewed.

Card security and onsite access to construction site
CSCS cards need to be scrutinised to see if they are in date and also not fake

5. “Do you have a ticket to use this?”…You should also be wearing specific PPE to use this piece of kit…

When a worker is booking out a tool, or piece of plant via the storeroom, Mosaic will flag up if they do not have the right qualifications or skill-set to use it. They can then be denied from taking a piece of equipment that they are not qualified for.

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6. “Who on site has not had a start of shift briefing?”…On a busy and complex project such as this, I need to ensure all workers receive this..

All safety briefings and toolbox talks can easily be recorded against worker records. All the worker has to do is present their smart cards to a reader to record attendance.  

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7. “I am not 100% sure how long that worker has been on site?”…Fatigue management was a real problem on my last job where some guys were double shifting…

Mosaic Fatigue Risk Manager notifies Supervisors (usually in the form of the project

Without technologies help it is impossible to keep track of your workforce all the time
Without technological help, it is difficult to ensure consistent H&S messages are communicated

administration) of workers who have reached their time limit for their shift. The Supervisor can then act accordingly. This helps prevent double shifting and allows shift patterns to be better managed.

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8. “I thought that worker had a site ban in place and was not allowed on here?”…With a site ban in place, I would be open to all sorts of litigation claims should there be an accident…

On a worker’s record ‘site bans’ are recorded and activated. If they still possess a smart card, then this would be flagged up when they try to access the site.

9. “I will need to check when that piece of kit needs an inspection?”…Poorly maintained equipment causes more downtime than we can afford…

Once an asset (which can be tool, small plant, large plant) has been registered on the system, management will be notified when it needs inspection and maintenance.

10. “I am not entirely sure how many workers we have on site at this moment?”…I simply don’t trust the signing in book…

Mosaic Tally, sometimes known as the time and attendance module, means all workers scan onto and off the site using their smart cards. Tally can be set up to work over multiple access points, allowing your workers and contractors alike to be monitored over large geographical areas. This information can easily be retrieved from the system in the form of a report.

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10 construction trends for construction in 2017

10 UK construction industry trends that will make an impact in 2017

We’ve identified 10 key construction industry trends set to shape the market this year. Advancements in technology and an increased focus on sustainability play a vital role here, pushing construction companies to consider different construction methods and technologies that are smarter and greener than ever before.

  1. Smarter buildings

As technology rapidly progresses and becomes more affordable, our buildings are becoming more intelligent. Innovations such as the Internet of Things (IoT), are being incorporated into modern building designs to automate certain functions such as energy and water consumption. This use of technology can improve sustainability, efficiency, safety, personalisation, interactivity, and comfort for those who use the facility.

  1. Prefabricated buildings

Architects are experimenting with the prefabricated building technique and enjoying some surprising results. With new technologies in the construction tool-kit, the modern-day prefabricated home can be built in 24 hours – and built well. This has even reached the attention of the British government as a possible solution to the UK’s housing crisis.

  1. BIM modelling

3D computer designs that use Building Information Modelling (BIM) are the new standard. These drawings provide a truly visual experience that gives the whole picture from every angle. As construction industry trends go, it’s becoming an increasingly popular method to view the architectural designs with the specific building systems in place.

When all potential problems have been addressed before the foundations have been poured, the jobsite will be easier to manage, field coordination will be simpler and construction can be done faster, safer, cheaper and to a higher standard.

  1. Mobile technology for on-site construction management

A construction site that runs like a well-oiled machine will save developers time and money. To help foremen manage their site operations more effectively, mobile-operated, cloud-powered software systems and apps are now available to facilitate easier administration. All field coordination as well as individual people management processes such as timesheets, performance reports and task allocation can be assigned, reviewed, tracked and stored on the go. This means managers can get on with overseeing the critical requirements of the build, rather than getting bogged down in administrative staff management.

  1. Green all the way

‘Green’ buildings use less energy and are thus cheaper to run. This, combined with growing concern for the environment, is driving the trend for more environmentally-friendly buildings. In response, new building regulations have come into effect to harness the power of renewable energy.

The British government aims to have 4 million solar-powered homes up and running by 2020. Renewable energies are gaining ground in the construction industry for good reason: between April and September this year, solar power generated more electricity than coal power.

  1. Labour shortage will continue to plague the industry

The next 12 months will see contractors attempt to stave off uncertainty as they deliver a huge pipeline while battling skills and tech challenges.

  1. Uncertainty over BREXIT

Balfour Beatty has already warned that leaving the EU could increase skills shortages in the UK infrastructure sector – and push up costs. Prolonged uncertainty over the split from the EU could have profound effects on the industry if poorly managed by the government.

  1. Offsite/modular construction will gain a stronger foothold in the market

Offsite construction, also called modular or prefab, isn’t new to the industry. However, experts predict the building method will grow in 2017 as quality, time and labour concerns make alternatives to traditional construction methods more attractive. 

  1. Consolidation

The industry’s cyclical nature, fragmented structure, low margins and project risk make sustained financial resilience challenging. According to Construction News fewer companies, better operating structures and more pricing power will reduce the need to underbid and can break the industry’s vicious cycle. Projects will get larger, and require contractors with the resources and balance sheets to shoulder and manage construction risk, and continue to participate in public-private partnerships. Risk mitigation will become a driver.

  1. Safety

The tragedy at Didcot Power Station was the low point of the year for the industry. Investigations continue and the cause will be probed, but the underlying fact is that fatalities rose in construction last year. Since the recession there has been pressure on companies to turn around losses, but this must not come at the expense of safety. We believe there must be a re-focus on this area in 2017.

Health, the oft-overlooked part of health and safety, will finally become a major industry theme in its own right next year. Various campaigns such as Mates in Mind to promote mental health, being led by the Health in Construction Leadership Group and supported by the British Safety Council, as well as CECA’s Stop. Make a Change campaign that is asking companies to use a stand-down day to discuss issues such as mental health and fatigue.

Mosaic is used by the biggest names in the construction industry to manage a range of safety critical and competency issues on major infrastructure sites and projects.  Indeed, Mosaic is sometimes mandated by companies due to the significant role it plays in reducing site health and safety issues, security, improved productivity and time saved.

To read more about us and the services we offer to the construction industry please click here

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Us survey health and safety

US construction survey reveals lack of technology support for project health and safety issues

In a recent American study, ‘The state of construction management report’ helps appreciate a better biggest challengeunderstanding of what their industry successes, challenges, products, and trends are in 2017. While it should be noted that this is an American study, some parallels can be drawn with the UK’s experience in adopting new technology in this sector. So let’s have a look at what they found out.

Daily reporting was at the top of the list of biggest industry challenges, followed by deadlines and resource management. Supervisors, Subcontractors and General Managers all listed Daily Reporting as one of their main industry challenges indicating a growing concern regarding their ability to keep track of critical information. As you would expect deadlines was up in the top 3 along with the managing of staff. Health and safety came at the bottom of the list.

They asked each stakeholder what their biggest daily challenge was in construction management to gain better insight into what each position in the industry identified as their challenges.

Management:

Finding new business was their main concern by far. Maintaining margins, staff issues and health & safety followed on from this:

business owner

Contractors & sub-contractors:

Resource management significantly lead the way for contractors who see it as their biggest daily challenge. This is followed by staff management and deadlines. Health and safety fell mid-way down the list of priorities for contractors and even further down for sub-contractors.

contractor / subcontractor

Supervisors:

Meeting deadlines is the biggest issue for time-pressured supervisors, followed by health and safety and daily reporting. They work extremely closely with contractors and their own workforce on site and therefore are more likely to be involved with daily health and safety issues. Hence it being further up their list of priorities at number 2.

Supervisor

Technology adoption:

The trend toward adopting technology to improve efficiency is very evident, with the majority of respondents saying they were already using between three and five technology products to support them in this aim. A small percentage of respondents were companies who had really embraced technology, use up to ten technology products on every project. Project management was the main use for technological support, with no mention of Health & Safety in these applications.

snip_20170207123223

However, when asked what the business priorities were, construction management professionals view safety as the top business priority with efficiency as a close second. Gratifyingly, safety is deemed the main priority, thus ensuring that all employees are kept safe during the construction process.

safety priority

While the majority of respondents view their construction management technology solutions as effective to very effective in the final question on the survey, there seems to be a disconnect in terms of technology assisting health and safety on projects – yet all this was cited as a main business objective. This begs the questions, ‘What innovations could be used to address this scant use of applications for safety reasons in the US?’.

Mosaic is used by the biggest names in the construction industry to manage a range of safety critical and competency issues on major infrastructure sites and projects.  Indeed, Mosaic is sometimes mandated by companies due to the significant role it plays in reducing site health and safety issues, security, improved productivity and time saved.

To read more about us and the services we offer to the construction industry please click here

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Source: Vaultnote

dangers on construction sites

Mosaic’s 10 top tips for maintaining a competent workforce on your construction project

Construction sites are notoriously dangerous places to work on if health and safety rules are not respected. That’s why it is all the more important to Request Demoensure the team participates in your company’s safety program, and does all it can to minimise hazards to mitigate site injuries. Here are our top 10 Mosaic tips for reducing accidents and injuries on your construction sites, through maintaining a competent workforce and making safety a priority for your entire team.

What makes a safe worker?
What makes a safe worker on-site – Mosaic’s top 10 tips

Principal contractors obviously have a legally binding duty of care to their workforce, whether they are employees or contractors. It is undoubtedly their responsibility to ensure they have the necessary skills, knowledge, training and experience to do the job safely and without putting their own or others’ health and safety at risk. It is also in their interest to ensure their workforce is both efficient and safety conscious from a profitability and operational perspective. So here are our Mosaic top 10 to support you in achieving this objective.

  1. Set out your health & safety expectations

Planning safety is as critical as executing it. Many contractors have written safety programs. While they may be very comprehensive, the day-to-day implementation of those programs gets back to performance (or non-performance) by the competent person or persons (supervisors / management). Support your staff with intelligent digital systems that eradicate paperwork, freeing them up to better manage staff.

 

  1. Plan your site inductions

The benefits of comprehensive health and safety training in a construction environment are many, providing both benefits for the employer, but more importantly, for the employee. Initially spending a short time discussing health and safety matters during an employee induction is the best first step towards maintaining a low accident rate and keeping lost man hours through sickness and injury to a minimum. Insurance companies look preferably towards employers who take health and safety matters seriously and premium rates will often reflect this.

The CDM regulations require that principal contractors ensure suitable site inductions are provided. They also require that contractors must provide each worker under their control with appropriate supervision, instructions and information so that construction work can be carried out, so far as is reasonably practicable, without risks to health and safety, and that this must include a suitable site induction, where not already provided by the principal contractor.

Construction companies these days have the option to deliver their inductions both on-line and off-line. In our experience, some chose a blended approach of the two. This ensures engagement is really delivered to the workforce twofold, with great effect.

 

  1. Check qualifications and cards

All workers on construction sites must hold the correct qualifications and training for the type of work they carry out. Increasingly so employers need to be confident that if they are shown a card it is legitimate and that the person showing it has the appropriate qualifications to be carrying out their job onsite.

Mosaic Skill Check

 

 

 

  1. Ensure access and exit to the site is checked

We are continually lobbying the industry to carry out electronic card checks as mandatory before allowing workers on site. From a recent CSCS survey half of the workers on their membership said their cards were checked the first time they went on site, but no much thereafter. One in five of those responsible for checking came stated that they came across a fake card. Access also needs to be regulated should a worker have a site bans for one reason or another.

 

  1. Is the worker fit for work?

This is a serious question! Many contractors, suppliers and clients of the industry undertake rigorous and regular measures to tackle this issue including zero tolerance to drugs and alcohol, random testing, providing information on drugs and alcohol through toolbox talks, site inductions and resources such as on-site posters.

Mosaic Occupational Health

 

 

 

  1. Monitor worker fatigue

Construction work involves high-risk activities. To work safely, construction workers must be physically and mentally alert. This means that fatigue is a potential risk. Employers and employees have a responsibility to manage fatigue in the workplace.

Over 3.5 million people in the UK are shift workers, including in the construction industry. There is no specific legislation for shift work but employers are responsible for the health and safety of workers and this includes reducing the risk of fatigue by planning shift work schedules effectively. This, in turn, reduces risks associated with fatigue and can prevent ill health, injuries and/or accidents.

 

  1. Plan regular toolbox talks

To ensure effective toolbox talks, you will need to ensure that all workers participate and are engaged in the toolbox talk.  Knowing and understanding the material delivered is really important too, thus ensuring good delivery. Toolbox talks can be time consuming as just gathering the workforce round to listen someone before the start of day’s work can affect productivity. Hence the aim is to be informal and supervisors can get certain members of the workforce to gather around during their rounds. This also allows for tailored messages to different trade to be delivered.

 

  1. Ensure systems in place for tool allocation, inventory, PPE distribution and asset inspections

Along with proper safety gear, workers should be required to wear reflective vests to reduce the risk of accidents. Ensure these have been distributed to all your employees and contractors alike. In addition correct policing of tools and plant equipment will help reduce theft but also stop workers without correct ‘tickets’ using equipment. A proper system for asset inspection and maintenance should be in place at all times.

 

 

  1. Invest in workforce training

At Mosaic, we understand that simply holding a record of employee qualifications, licences and training courses is insufficient in the current working environment. You need to see your workers develop, lead and improve upon their skillset.

You need piece of mind to know that your workforce can deliver in the way that is safe and productive. By using situational judgement testing you will become more aware and be able to highlight skills and knowledge gaps and expose employee behaviour that may pose a risk to regulatory compliance, best practice, health and safety or even competitiveness in your organisation. 

 

  1. Ongoing delivery development

Don’t just rest on your laurels!

This is an ongoing process that needs to be repeat on every project / site and learnings shared between key colleagues from one project to the next.

Mosaic family of modules

 

 

 

Mosaic is used by the biggest names in the construction industry to manage a range of safety critical and competency issues on major infrastructure sites and projects.  Indeed, Mosaic is sometimes mandated by companies due to the significant role it plays in reducing site health and safety issues, security, improved productivity and time saved.

To read more about us and the services we offer to the construction industry please click here

Tunnel Boring Machine at Lee Tunnel - Thames Tideway Project

Longitudinal health and safety project is a first for UK construction – Thames Tideway project will be used for the fieldwork

Researchers at Loughborough University are embarking on a unique project that will track and inform health and safety leadership, policies, and practices at Tideway.

The project, commissioned by the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH), is the first of its kind to study the impact and process of occupational health and safety (OSH) in real time on such a large, multi-site construction programme.

Tideway is the company building the Thames Tideway Tunnel, a major new sewer urgently needed to protect the tidal River Thames from sewage pollution. The 7.2m diameter tunnel, which is due for completion in 2023, is 25km long and runs up to 65m below the River Thames.

Loughborough researchers will be embedded into each of the joint venture teams and will monitor key health and safety processes, personnel, documents, events and activities to provide robust evidence of what does and doesn’t work.

Because of their unique positions within the teams, the researchers will be able to witness how OSH policies and practices intersect with other organisational agendas, and review their effectiveness in real-time. Ultimately, it is intended that findings and best practice will be shared across the wider construction industry and will influence future OSH management and practice.

Project lead Alistair Gibb, Professor of Complex Project Management in Loughborough University’s School of Civil and Building Engineering, said: “This is one of the first studies employing longitudinal research methods on a major infrastructure project of this type, providing an exciting opportunity for researchers to be involved at the very early stages of a major project and follow it through to completion.

“Almost all previous health and safety research comes from a snapshot approach. This project gives us a unique opportunity to monitor OSH within a living lab, and to provide real-time feedback that will enable managers to make changes and improvements – and evaluate their effectiveness – during construction. It promises to provide a completely fresh perspective on the ways in which OSH policies are enacted and implemented. ”

Steve Hails, Director of Health, Safety and Wellbeing at Tideway, said: “Taking part in this hugely important research with Loughborough University is one way we are working towards achieving transformational health, safety and wellbeing standards at Tideway.”

IOSH Head of Information and Intelligence Kate Field said: “IOSH is pleased to be funding this innovative research programme, with the opportunities it presents to examine transformational OSH practices over an extended period. It has the potential to provide new insights into key OSH issues that will be of real value to our members and business.”

We, at Mosaic, are understandably very excited about this piece of research, as our system will be deployed across the 3 joint venture consortium’s building the project. Mosaic will be providing a variety of services across the project over its lifetime:

• Electronic Onboarding / Induction
• Competency Management System
• Safety critical real time skill gap analysis
• Recording of Safety messages / toolbox talks using Smart Cards and Mobile devices
• Access integration for safe movement though zones based on skills
• Perception Assessments – Measures Knowledge vs Confidence to highlight high Risk workers (Situational Based Assessments)
• Fatigue Risk Management Systems
• ‘Network Passport’ embracing all Joint Venture (JV) stakeholders

We wish them well with their research endeavours and look forward to hearing the interim findings. John Micciche, Managing Director of Mosaic said “I am particularly thrilled about this piece of research, as it represents an opportunity to gather robust & statistically significant data on a sizeable project where our system is used as a platform to deliver health & safety excellence.”

To find out more about our involvement in this project click here

Construction Industry - Asset and Stock tagging

Crime in the construction industry – What steps can be taken to help prevent workforce crime

It is not surprising that the most common forms of crime in the construction industry are theft, vandalism and health and safety neglect. These crimes contribute to the sector suffering millions of pounds’ worth of losses every year.  These costs relate to not only the crimes themselves but also the resulting financial penalties, such as increased insurance premiums and project delays.

Recent research, carried out by the CIOB (Chartered Institute of Building), examines the scale and impact of crime on the construction industry and highlights the key areas of concern for senior level construction workers and management.  Theft is the most common crime; 21% of respondent’s state that they experience theft each week and, overall, 92% are affected weekly, monthly or yearly.  This indicates that the industry needs to seriously consider the prevention of theft and ensure that construction workers in supervisory roles know how to deal with it appropriately.

Focusing on theft and vandalism for this article, it is estimated that the construction industry suffers losses of more than £400 million* a year due to these, although it is hard to get an accurate figure as many of these crimes go unreported. The theft of plant poses a particular problem for the industry; the replacement of expensive equipment could lead to a project incurring substantial and unforeseen costs. The recovery rate for plant that has been stolen has improved in recent years.  This is thanks to initiatives developed by membership organisation Construction Industry Theft Solutions (CITS), plus continuing collaboration with the police on crime prevention and the recovery of stolen goods.

Additionally, the theft of tools, building materials and small plant is also a major issue that plagues the industry – particularly as these crimes are sometimes perpetrated by direct employees or contractors working on a project. Let’s have a closer look at the figures:

items stolen / theft from construction sites
CIOB Survey: Responses – items such as tools/building materials/small plant stolen from UK construction sites

The survey found that both tools and building materials are stolen by either direct employees/contractors (approximately half) or third parties. CCTV, security measures and access controls can help eradicate the problem caused by the latter, but what more can be done about this crime within the existing workforce? Small plant theft can also be attributed to workforce members in one in four cases. When we look at vandalism statistics committed on a project, we also see that approximately 20-25% is once again caused by this group. It should be noted here that statistically speaking contractors do seem more problematic than the direct workforce with regards to these issues.

vandalism on UK construction sites
CIOB survey: Respondents – Vandalism on UK construction sites

These crimes have long reaching financial implications for all the organisations concerned. A £400 million pounds annual lost is a huge sum of money, compounded by an industry operating on notoriously low profitability margins. It is certainly money that the sector can ill afford, particularly in the current climate of BREXIT and exchange rate volatility.

The survey asked the respondents their opinion of the financial impact upon their organisations – One in four were unable to put a figure upon the cost of this crime, but nearly one in ten respondents said that crime in their industry costs them £100k or more annually.

The study concluded by asking if this problem has remained the same over the last year. Half felt it was no different, but worryingly 40% felt it was getting worst. This begs the questions – what measures can be undertaken to try and combat crimes carried out by the workforce?

Mosaic stock control, asset tagging & inspection manager is a powerful multifaceted tool to support management with the tracking of materials and equipment on-site. Historically, on-site materials tracking and locating have been made complicated by the use of traditional paper based tracking processes. These are invariably labour intensive, potentially ineffectual and contribute to the increase in construction costs.

This type of solution, provides a slick on-line process that easily allows you to book out and in items against a worker record. It provides an online and real time record of where plant, tools and materials are at any point in time during the project, and if policed correctly can reduce these losses.

To conclude, we will look at a live case study of Costain’s London Bridge project, to gain insight into the solution they employed to keep track of stock and machinery use. The client “Costain” wanted to make provisions to track workforce use of machinery, tools and issuing of PPE (Personal Protection Equipment). As they had 1000+ workers on site at any one time, they set up a designated storeroom on site manned by 7 Store Men over a 24-hour opening period. Mosaic’s Stock and Asset control manager system was employed and items were tagged up with RFID (Radio-Frequency Identification) and scanned out and back in using a PDA’s (Personal Digital Assistant). To date there has been over 1.4 million transactions where tools and stock have been accessed and returned.

To find out more about the Mosaic’s Asset & Stock Control Manager click here

*D. Edwards, Plant and equipment theft: a practical guide, 2007.

Source: Crime in the construction industry – CIOB (Chartered Institute of Building) survey 2016

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Competency management system in use at Hinkley Point C

Mosaic helps Costain deliver on marine tunnelling project at Hinkley Point C

Costain, one of the UK’s leading engineering solutions providers, is delighted be a major contract partner in the construction of the new Hinkley Point C nuclear power station in Somerset. Costain has started work and will provide the design and delivery of the water cooling systems for the nuclear power station.

Costain will design and construct three marine tunnels, around 11km in total length and each one approximately seven metres in diameter, to take in cooling water from the Severn Estuary for the nuclear reactor before it is cleansed, recycled and returned. They will also be building a jetty at the site.

Mosaic Management Systems will provide an on-line competency management system to support site management on this project. A 500+ strong workforce will be deployed on this phase of the project. Mosaic has been working with Costain now for a number of years, which means data can be migrated across from previous projects that Mosaic has been deployed on. The unique ability of the Mosaic system is that it has a ‘Network Passport’ allowing relevant work details to be transferred across, thus saving considerable time during set up of a new project.

John Micciche MD of Mosaic said “We have worked with Costain on numerous projects now and we are extremely pleased that they have chosen us once again, particularly on such a ground-breaking project.”

To find out more about us click here

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