Our most precious resource is our people; therefore, the safety of everyone is always first and foremost in our thoughts and actions. We believe that safety, quality, and productivity are inseparable and work hand in hand. We must deliver on these values for every project to be a success. We also believe that the quality assurance and quality control process is integral to our way of doing work. Our director of quality works with senior project management to delegate on-site quality control responsibilities, and efficiently implement the project-specific quality control plan. Safety is a core value and is an integral part of our company’s culture.
In fact, Franco Associates recently participated in Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA’s) 2014 National Safety Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction. The purpose of this initiative was to join other construction companies and industry groups to raise awareness of preventing fall hazards on construction sites. Fall prevention safety standards were among the top 10 most frequently cited OSHA challenges. A Safety Stand-Down is a voluntary event encouraging employers to talk directly to employees about safety. In this, Franco Associates recently joined other companies to plan a toolbox talk or another safety activity such as conducting safety equipment inspections, developing rescue plans, or discussing job specific hazards.
WE STRIVE FOR ZERO INCIDENTS AND ZERO ACCIDENTS
Again, we recognize that our people are our most valuable resource and that merely complying with OSHA regulations is a minimum, and thus in certain incidents we often require more than OSHA or the General Contractor may require to ensure the safety and welfare of our workers and others. Safety is the principle concern at all levels of management. Every responsible effort is made by Franco to maintain a safe and healthful workplace for our employees, subcontractors, clients, their employees, and the general public. The steps we take to create and ensure this safety environment are detailed further in our Safety Program and Site Specific Fall Protection Programs as well as our JSAs and AHAs. Frequently and periodically we issue Field Directives and other safety related memoranda to keep our Foreman and entire field crew apprised of any updates in OSHA regulations as well as better ways to perform routine task more safely – such as always being tied off when landing material –to maintain our ongoing commitment to safety and constant improvements to eliminate any potential hazards at the job sites Our safety committee meets regularly to do site assessments and to brainstorm and discuss new, improved ways to abate, avoid and remedy any potential hazards, identify and investigate any near miss or incident and dissect them to ascertain their contributing cause and how to avoid such in the future. We strive to achieve a Zero Incident Zero Accident job site on all projects.
In recognition of our efforts, Franco has won numerous awards for Safety Excellence from the Master Builders’ Association of Western Pennsylvania (MBA). The MBA also nominated Franco for the AGC Construction Safety Excellence Award in the Building 100,000 – 500,000 Man-Hours category. Our OSHA partnership agreement through the MBA reinforces our commitment to job site safety.
Franco’s project-specific quality control and / or quality assurance plans are designed, implemented, and maintained in conformance with project requirements. Our plans conform with ICRA, ASHE, and USACE requirements for institutional projects, and NAVLAP guiding principles and LEED® requirements for all other projects as required. The plans address product submittal and approval control, procurement control, contract document control, change directives, material delivery and storage control, installation workmanship standards, testing and inspection, as well as photography and document control. Our project-specific plans establish quality assurance activities at the earliest time possible and are consistent with the schedule to accomplish the activities in a successful manner from start to finish.
The cornerstone to achieving quality is preparing a QA/QC plan at the outset or pre-planning stages of the project and executing the plan throughout the duration of the project. Quality in construction is not something that is just created; quality must be inherent in the design to be achieved in the field. Therefore, to produce the best quality in both design and construction, our goal is to “build the project on paper” to minimize any surprises once construction begins, and know the job better than anyone else. The better prepared we are going into a project, the more time we can spend constructing the project.
OUR SAFETY APPROACH
Our approach to safety includes six elements that are necessary for every project.
- Pre-Qualify. This is required of all subcontractors, vendors, and suppliers.
- Pre-Plan. Pre-planning for safety begins with the bid documents and is constant throughout the construction process. Upon award of a project, the project team develops a Definable Features of Work (DFW) document based on the bid packages, phases of work, and identification of tasks to be completed. With each new phase of work, the team plans a pre-installation meeting and identifies it in the schedule. This date represents the due date for the job safety analysis to be completed.
- Educate. Communication of safety, health policies, and procedures begins on the employee’s first day at the employee orientation. Each Franco employee receives training on the identification of potential hazards he/she may encounter on the job site, preventive measures or corrective actions, and the OSHA regulations. Franco keeps employees informed of updates or changes to the site health and safety plan and OSHA regulations through safety meetings, written notices, and posting of notices on the company bulletin board. Franco communicates this information in a manner understandable to all employees.
- Enforce. Safety is the responsibility of every Franco employee. Safety is a metric that everyone on the job will always remember; at Franco, we take it very seriously and expect our subcontractors and vendors to follow suit. On a Franco project, no one person can say safety is their only responsibility; safety is everyone’s responsibility.
- Recognize. The Franco mission is to build a strong safety culture through education, training, enforcement, and recognition. Franco implements an employee incentive program based on safe hours worked to recognize and reward safety performance. Projects that achieve our company goal of “Zero Incidents” per each quarter receive recognition. Four consecutive quarters of incident free work is recognized via the Franco Platinum Award.
- Reward. Franco rewards employees who maintain the highest possible standards of safety in their day-to-day work activities. Our incentive program does more than enforce OSHA regulations; it changes attitudes and behaviors, maintaining a safety culture throughout our company.