Best Sources On Behavioral-Based Safety In Construction by SkillSignal

Best Sources On Behavioral-Based Safety In Construction


Behavioral-based safety, or BBS, is becoming all the rage - especially in the construction industry. More and more companies are starting to learn from its theories and implement its practices. And, what’s more, it seems to really work!


BBS uses psychology and BF Skinner’s Reinforcement Theory to achieve great results when it comes to safety adherence in the workplace. The premise is that reinforcement (especially positive reinforcement) will lead to increased motivation and a desirable shift in behavior.


Construction is one of the most dangerous occupations out there. So, naturally, people have taken to applying BBS practices on construction projects. Safety is a number one priority on these sites.


Let’s discuss the 5 best sources you can access today to learn more about BBS in construction. We’ve included two guidelines, one article, a blog, and an in-depth review.


5 Best Sources to Learn More About Behavioral-Based Safety in Construction

  1. Health and Safety Authority: Guide

In 2013, the HSA published their ‘Behavior Based Safety Guide’. It’s a 24 page PDF file on everything you need to know about BBS and its implementation. But don’t be fooled by its length. Although it’s short, it’s also to the point and extremely educational.


It describes BBS and reinforcement theory, explains goal setting and feedback, gives you some tips on how to implement a BBS program, and even backs itself up with an interesting case study. This case study shows how a 20 year long BBS implementation worked onsite at an oil refinery.


If you’re looking to gain some knowledge on the basics, this is the perfect source for you to use. You’ll learn a lot about BBS practices in general, and you’ll be ready to read more about how to apply them in a construction setting.

  1. COAA: Guideline

Another good source that can help to guide you towards an understanding of behavioral-based safety is the Construction Owners Association of Alberta’s ‘Behavior Based Safety: A Best Practices Guideline’. It was published in 2008 and was developed using a consensus process.


The guideline is another great source to use if you’re considering implementing BBS, but don't know where or how to start. It provides you with information reached through consensus by people with different viewpoints and interests. As such, you can learn from others’ experiences and ideas.


It explains BBS, why it’s useful, and goes into an in-depth guideline on implementing the process. Just keep in mind when reading it that things have changed in the world of BBS. So, it’s a good idea to supplement this guide with some additional, more current research on BBS.

  1. SafeStart: Article

Now that you’ve covered the basics of BBS, you can move on to learning how it can and does correlate with the construction industry. Enter Larry Wilson’s article entitled ‘Behavior-Based Safety and the Construction Industry’.


The article was originally published in 2001 by the Construction & Engineering Safety Magazine. It’s 20 years old, but that doesn’t discredit its reliability as a source. In fact, Wilson has gone on to found and author SafeStart, a hugely popular safety awareness program.


In this informative article, you’ll see a critical review of BBS. The author delves deep into whether BBS is appropriate for the construction industry, and whether it can be implemented properly in the coming years. It’s really interesting to see how it was thought about back then, and reading more sources can show you how it has developed up to now.

  1. Safety Management Group: Blog

The Safety Management Group is a professional safety service company that aims to reduce incidents, improve quality, and enhance productivity. Their website has a blog that focuses on safety culture.


The blog has a great article entitled ‘Using Behavior-Based Approaches to Enhance Construction Safety’ that hones in on safety culture in construction in particular, with a focus on BBS. The article covers how behavioral-based safety can and has been implemented in the construction world, and discusses the benefits of this.


However, it’s not just this article that can provide you with further knowledge and understanding of BBS. Take a look at their articles on safety culture, too. They are great resources for providing you with advice and tools that can help to establish and maintain a culture of safety (which you can easily do with BBS.)

  1. ResearchGate: Review

On ResearchGate, there is a review entitled ‘Behaviour Based Safety Approach And Factors Affecting Unsafe Behaviour in Construction Sector’. It’s a journal article that focuses on how the human error of unsafe behavior can really affect accident rates.


In a nutshell, it talks about how the behavioral-based safety method is an effective process when it comes to behavior shaping and diminishing accidents and incidents. To make this point, it reviews several different studies that focus on unsafe behaviors and the effects of a BBS approach.


That’s not all you can find on ResearchGate, though. Simply type ‘behavioral-based safety’ into the search bar and you’ll be able to find loads of different articles that are easy to access. ResearchGate is a fantastic resource for you to access new knowledge and learning opportunities.


Final Thoughts


Hopefully, you find the above resources helpful as you delve into the world of BBS in construction. If you’re still looking to find out more about BBS implementations, take a look at the rest of our blog - we cover loads of topics that are linked to behavioral-based safety.


So, have you decided to implement BBS? If so, SkillSignal definitely has the app for you.


We offer you an all-in-one safety and compliance app. SkillSignal addresses everything that needs to be addressed when working in a high-risk workspace. This can help you on your journey towards implementing BBS practices - receiving in-depth reports means you’re able to identify problems. And, in identifying problems and the data, you can use BBS to improve upon these problems you’ve identified! It’s as easy as that.


Take a look at the rest of our website to find out more about our app and how it works. Or, check out our blog and read all about behavioral-based safety and more!


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