• Chrissy Roff
    6
    Hi there, we are an Electrical Contracting company and our Electricians use a number of risky tools, such as nail guns, drop saws etc. We do not recruit a lot of new people as we "grow our own" and have a process for training them and assessing their competency.

    I just wondered if others could share how they assess the competency of new, qualified team members. Our team are out on site so we are not working alongside them, so it is not practical to do it on the job as such. Do you accept their declaration on their level of competency as part of the process? Any feedback is appreciated. Cheers Chrissy
  • Steve H
    267
    We do not recruit a lot of new people as we "grow our own" and have a process for training them and assessing their competency.Chrissy Roff

    The EWRB is very prescriptive regarding proper supervision of trainee electrical workers Chrissy, so your comments regarding your companies training/assessment of their workers is not surprising.

    With regard to newly qualified/overseas imported workers, I would be trying to ensure they work alongside a competent assessor to monitor their compliance with your H&S system, safe & appropriate use of tools and Electrical Safety/compliance with the appropriate electrical standards(AS/NZS3000 etc) for a few days at least.
  • Andrew P
    10
    We are in a similar situation. We usually run along the lines of self declaration if they have worked in the trade for sometime and run through specific machines as required. otherwise it is a you know nothing till you have been trained.

    Drop saws nail guns etc. there can be a lot of variation even between these tools.
    A Makita drop saw is different to an Elu or Colt (which shouldn't be used by trade in my opinion:monkey: ) or a battery powered Ryobi.
    Nail guns, -Pasalode vs Makita battery powered brad nailer vs Ramset J20. All shoot nails :wink: :lol:

    Just some thoughts and another minefield :-)
  • Stephen Small
    30
    Chrissy
    Why are you treating qualified hires any differently from those you train up?
    If you are not using the same competency framework for new workers; Use your JSA/SWMS/SOP/XYZ ancronym as a basis for assessing that the worker is competent in using the tool - to your level of safety (not previous bad habits).
    you will need to apportion time for a designated assessor to be on site with them.

    Our workers are all EWRB qualified, but we have additional industry and company competencies they must pass before they can work unsupervised. And they all undertake refreshers every 2 years
  • Yonny Yeung
    6
    Hi Chrissy,

    What about a buddy system where the assessor / trainer / senior staff member is mentoring / checking the quality of work by working alongside them for at least the first week? I know this brings on extra cost, but can you afford to have someone seriously injured if they are not trained to your standards?

    For our industry, having the qualification is good and means they are qualified to work on their own. But you don't know what they are like until you have a chance to witness the quality of work and see whether they are following the SOP.

    There must be different things that your company does that others don't. A good mentor can offer tips on how to do things better / safer and like Stephen said, pick up on bad habits as well.

    I would imagine Worksafe would be interested to know whether your company would leave new staff member working alone unsupervised from their first day. Doesn't sound good, does it?
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