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  • 13 July 2011 10:39

Queensland’s Natural Disasters Result in OHS and Risk Management Policy Overhaul

78 per cent of organisations found gaps in their OHS policies following the Queensland natural disasters

Sydney, 13 July 2011 – According to a survey of OHS and risk managers released today by ComOps, more than half of all companies plan to review their occupational health and safety (OHS) policies due to this year’s natural disasters in Queensland.

The survey involved 65 senior business managers including CEOs, OHS and Risk Managers and was conducted by ComOps at the Queensland Safety Show staged in Brisbane last month. Results revealed that 78 per cent of organisations found gaps in their OHS policies following the disasters and as a result, risk management strategy is now a greater priority overall.

Late last year, a similar ComOps survey found that proactive risk management and the need for accurate reporting would be the two most important issues to OHS and risk managers in 2011. It appears that the Queensland disasters may have accentuated these requirements with 34 per cent of managers believing the average organisation is under greater pressure than ever to invest heavily in OHS policies and procedures. In fact, just under a quarter plans to invest more resources in safety policies and procedures as a result of the Queensland disasters.

The survey also highlighted some of the key barriers faced by OHS and risk managers. 32 per cent indicated that a legally compliant OHS strategy is not a high enough priority within their organisation and 29 per cent cannot afford the investment at the current time.

In addition, when it comes to deploying effective OHS strategies within their organisations, 35 per cent say that they are frustrated by the behaviour of their workforce colleagues in assisting with policy and procedure compliance, while 14 per cent don’t believe they are given adequate time to dedicate to the overall issue of safety.

Moshe Woods, Manager, Safety, Risk and Claims Management Solutions, ComOps, said, “The survey suggests that the Queensland floods have been a wake-up call for a comprehensive review of OHS strategies, all the way from design and formulation through to incident reporting, risk mitigation and management. At the same time, the data would suggest that while the will is there to dedicate more resources to OHS, managers are still hindered by slack budget allocation and the perception that other business requirements have a greater priority.

“It is reassuring to note however, that the survey also found more than a third of organisations are currently planning to deploy an OHS and risk management system, with a quarter of these planning to do so within the next year. This OHS policy overhaul should place Queensland in a better position at times of natural disaster in the future.”

Respondents represented both public and private organisations ranging from less than ten through to more than 1,000 employees.

About ComOps Limited

ComOps Limited has a 39-year history in the IT industry in Australasia and listed on the ASX in 1999. The company develops, sells, implements, hosts and supports software solutions in the Safety, Risk and Claims Management, Workforce Optimisation, Recruitment, eLearning, Business Intelligence, ERP, Mobile Sales Force Automation, eCommerce and Retail Management markets. These solutions are used by a range of blue chip clients such as Toll Transport, Sensis, RACQ, Steinhoff Asia Pacific (Freedom Furniture), Heinz, Australia Post, Toshiba, Dulux, Canon, Queensland Government, NSW Lotteries, DP World, Virgin Blue and Commonwealth Bank to name just a few.

ComOps is a Microsoft Gold Partner, Progress Premier Partner, is ISO 9001:2008 Quality Accredited and Government Endorsed.

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