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What does mean HSE?
Generally, HSE is an important issue because it has to do with safety. All authorities and responsibilities should be defined clearly. HSE can be a part of PM team, like the other areas, e.g. quality, HR.
Health & Safety regulations and the staff who are responsible for ensuring compliance with those regulations are just one example of Control Partner which we face on almost any type of projects. Others include functions like Privacy, Risk, Legal and IT Security.
It is important to engage them early in the life of a project so that their control requirements can be baked into the requirements baseline vs. being identified late in the project.
On large construction projects, we’ve always had a separate on-site HSE department that reported directly to PMO. There are many regulations especially when you work on an international level and in project such as those for oil and gas like for example: 1 Safety Officer per 30 People. I remember in one of the projects I was involved in, the total no of workforce exceeded 15,000 and the project budget was $1.4 Billions.
Conflict when it comes to HSE is somehow inevitable but it has to be resolved. We’ve always had banners on site, safety first !
In response to your question specifically, you can review my article: Precast Concrete Yards HSE Management:
I agree with Kiron.
Ensuring compliance with those regulations should done early of project (or let say prior start of project).
May be the lesson learned from similar project(s) will highly help for solving such conflicts.
As you can see by the responses, not too many people know or understand the relationship of HSE to the Construction Execution process. as you know:
Major Construction Contracts (and Clients) require a robust HSE department and usually specify the ratio of HSE officer to worker-1 for 30 is not uncommon.
In order to remain Independent of the execution team (and to avoid production pressure to shortcut safety practices) the Safety Manager usually reports to the CEO directly.
In practice, I have fully supported my HSE team on my Projects, and work closely with them to assure safe practices. I dedicated resources (Money and Time) to their success. I have shut down whole job sites, and partial sites in order to enforce safety discipline.
In my opinion, if a PM allows a major injury to occur on his site, he/she is a failure. Regardless of cost or schedule performance success, a major injury or death converts that success into a failure nobody wants to be associated with their Project.
From the trenches!
Fundamentally, you're talking about requirements, some internally imposed and some externally by regulatory agencies (OSHA, building codes, EPA, NTSB, etc.). Clearly defined requirements, guidance on how to meet them, and up-front compliance planning reduces ambiguity and conflict. Clearly defined RAAs provides improved clarity as to who the decision makers are. Clearly defined conflict resolution processes help address situations where decision makers don't agree. We have very robust processes to address HSE, but we still have a myriad of SMEs with different specialties to help work through the inevitable situations where we are treading new ground, or we encounter conflicts and roadblocks.
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