InTents October/November 2022 - 43

2. Measurable: Is your leading
indicator presented as a number, rate
or percentage that allows you to track
and evaluate clear trends over time?
3. Accountable: Does your leading
indicator track an item that is
relevant to your goal?
4. Reasonable: Can you reasonably
achieve the goal that you set for your
leading indicator?
5. Timely: Are you tracking your
leading indicator regularly enough
to spot meaningful trends from your
data within your desired timeframe?
There is no " one size its all " way to
use leading indicators. Employers with
newer programs may use indicators
that focus on starting a program,
while employers with more mature
programs may use them to monitor
how close they are to achieving higher
performance targets. Some employers
may also ind it helpful to limit the
number of leading indicators they start
out with or how many they use at any
one time. How employers assign who
will track and carry out goals for leading
indicators can vary based on the size of
the business, who the business has on
staff, whether the business has a safety
manager, and the scope of job duties of
the employers' workforce.
Using leading indicators
Leading indicators are a valuable tool
that you can use to make measurable
and long-lasting improvements to safety
and health outcomes in the workplace.
They can be valuable regardless of
whether you have a safety or health
program, what you have included in
your program, or what stage you may
be at in your program. Use the checklist
below to get started today.
1. Identify your top problem areas.
For hazards, review your injury
logs and results from your hazard
assessments. Start with the hazard
with the greatest risk of harming
workers by evaluating the severity
of the potential exposure and the
likelihood that an incident could
occur. Prioritize hazards over other
areas of your program, particularly if
a threat is imminent.
2. For other program elements, talk with
your workers about what areas you
could improve. For data that you are
already collecting, determine whether
it is an area that you should prioritize.
3. Consider what actions you could
take to address your key areas. Talk
with your workers and anyone else
with knowledge of the issue that can
provide suggestions.
4. Set a goal and use leading indicators
to reach it. Make an informed
decision about what your goal should
be and how long it might take to
achieve. Choose a leading indicator
that can help you to achieve your goal
over time.
5. Collect the data. Begin collecting the
leading indicator data for the time
period you decided on as well as the
data for your goal during that same
time period.
6. Periodically review the results.
Assemble the results into a graph to
determine whether there is a positive
relationship between your leading
indicator and your goal. Did the action
that you took help you to achieve your
goal? If not, try something else.
7. Remember that just one or two
indicators can make a positive impact.
OSHA recommends customizing the
type and number of indicators to
your needs, resources, and abilities
as they evolve over time.
This article is excerpted from a publication
titled, " Using Leading Indicators to Improve
Safety and Health Outcomes, " published
by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health
Administration. To read the complete
publication, visit osha.gov/leading-indicators.
InTentsMag.com 43
While lagging
indicators can alert
you to the existence
of a hazard, leading
indicators allow you
to take preventive
action before it turns
into an incident.
http://www.osha.gov/leading-indicators http://www.InTentsMag.com

InTents October/November 2022

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