When Pou Chen Group started planning their building expansion in Indonesia, they engaged Fusion Safety to support workplace health and safety in both phases of the project.
By introducing the power of rapport in the workplace, Fusion helped to develop a safety culture that was embraced by every employee.
Pou Chen Group is one of the largest international footwear manufacturers. Founded in Taiwan, they develop products for leading brands, including adidas, Asics, New Balance, Nike, Salomon, and Timberland.
They engaged Fusion to support workplace health and safety oversight for a two-phased construction project in Indonesia.
Fusion Safety was recommended to Pou Chen by one of their clients based on our expertise in workplace health and safety and trusted relationships built across the construction industry.
Due to budget constraints and perceived limitations on time, our challenge was to ensure that safety remained a high priority for the project that was heavily affected by the pandemic.
It was immediately clear that there was a lack of minimum safety standard imposed by the developer and compliance was emphasised exclusively through measures that were both severe and ambiguous. For this project, there was a focus on imposing penalties and fines to each hazard found onsite. These strict measures led to confusion onsite and escalated tension because budget and timeline were prioritised over safety.
Remote monitoring had become a norm and workers were expected to use technology as a means of communication, but no clear guidelines were given for workers to understand what technology to adopt or how best to use it.
Increased COVID measures also had two unforeseen impacts: additional PPE had to be purchased for all staff, adding to an already limited budget, and contracted HSE personnel were required to check the use of PPE at several worker access points throughout the site, taking up more of their limited time.
Fusion initially met with teams across Pou Chen HQ and Pou Chen Indonesia online to ensure there was a strategic approach to implementation. Upon the appointment of a general contractor, Fusion worked with these site teams to implement a collaborative safety plan for the project. Importantly, the Fusion team engaged with all workers onsite, from those in management to those on the ground.
Budget and time were two factors that determined many of the decisions made onsite. Fusion initially worked with teams across Pou Chen HQ and Pou Chen Indonesia to understand where safety sat on their priority list.
One of Fusion’s immediate priorities was building rapport with the site teams. Through ongoing engagement and respectful discussions, Fusion was able to demonstrate that implementing clear and consistent safety measures not only had little to no impact on their tight budget, but also saved time.
Instead of using severe penalties and fines as their primary means of enforcing compliance, Fusion worked with the site teams to understand how a focus on safety can be implemented in other ways.
For Pou Chen, Fusion:
Advised on appropriate and non-negotiable safety standards required for the site, overcoming ambiguity and improving understanding for all stakeholders.
Developed a reporting system to streamline workflows, improving efficiency and prioritising time spent on safety.
Implemented a standard within the Safety Committee that sees all managers now attend meetings, increasing the value of safety across the organisation.
Ensured that safety is listed a mandatory item on meeting agendas.
Implemented a timely means of communication for work teams to share information and provide a single point of contact for any issues.
Initiated a joint patrol of teams made up of Pou Chen workers and contractors onsite to discuss unsafe activities and behaviours, a behaviour that was the first of its kind for Pou Chen.
Developed daily, weekly, and monthly inspection reports that detailed how the safety improvements implemented with support from Fusion aligned with legal requirements.
Supported the design and development of a movable scaffold for the site that reduced risk when working at heights and led to efficiencies onsite.
Created a culture where workers are actively identifying and reporting hazards and seeking PPE to ensure the team is safe.
Developed workflows to ensure mandatory COVID measures were implemented to protect workers’ safety without interrupting the project, including introducing staggered check in times to promote physical distancing.
One major initiative for Pou Chen was the implementation and upholding of non-negotiable stop work events before they could escalate onsite.
This occurred when a contractor tried to lift a permanent steel stair structure without implementing a lifting plan. By calling for a stop work event, Fusion were able to work closely with Pou Chen and the contractors to ensure all necessary compliance needs were met before work resumed. In another situation, workers were pressured to work in an excavation pit where very limited precautions had been taken to ensure their safety.
Fusion called for a stop work event to ensure that the contractors were fully aware of the hazards and understood how to mitigate risks before proceeding. Contractors ultimately implemented a full precaution measure with support from Fusion.
Over the course of this project, Fusion built strong relationships with Pou Chen. When an earthquake impacted a non-construction zone near the site, Fusion was asked to visually inspect the structure and assess its integrity. Fusion’s professional expertise was also applied to other construction facilities nearby.
At the start of this project, safety was low on the priority list for Pou Chen, overshadowed by budget constraints and perceived limitations on time.
Fusion is proud to say that safety is now an integral aspect of this project with all employees, from management to on-ground workers, now acutely aware of the need to ensure safety measures are in place.
We achieved this through a collaborative approach, where we worked with Pou Chen and their contractors to help build rapport in the workplace. All teams demonstrated integrity through both phases of the project, particularly when the pandemic initially prevented face-to-face consultation.
By shifting the mindset around safety, Fusion was able to support Pou Chen to change the culture on their project in Indonesia and encourage all workers to embrace the highest standard of safety in the workplace.