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Workplace safety climate assessment based on behaviors and measurable indicators



Previous conceptualizations of safety climate present snapshots of the state of workplace safety. In reality, the factors of workplace safety climate are complex and need to be analyzed using a systemic approach. In this article, we expand on the customary concept of safety climate, and propose a systemic research framework that integrates four study fields: engineering, ergonomics, operation management, and technology management. In this framework, we define micro and macro safety climate concepts based on the study object and organizational hierarchy.

Our model focuses on two safety climate dimensions: behaviors and measurable indicators. First, we propose that the safety process consists of four basic behaviors: perceive, decide, communicate, and act (PDCA). These PDCA behaviors constitute a safety climate sociotechnical system involving the three roles of operator, supervisor, and manager. We then present 12 measurable indicators of PDCA behaviors for each safety climate research field to advance the systematic assessment of both qualitative and quantitative facets of safety climate. © 2008 American Institute of Chemical Engineers Process Saf Prog, 2008