Safety & risk

Making sure that our people, clients and communities go home safely every day is very important to us. That’s why safety is GHD’s number one core value.

This year, we undertook our first internal Safety Culture Survey. The results were very encouraging, with survey host IBM categorising several responses as world class. We identified several important opportunities for us to build upon our growing safety culture.

SMART Behaviours

The introduction of our SMART Behaviours Model is an evolution in our approach to safety. It encourages and empowers our people to demonstrate positive safety behaviours, avoid undesired actions, and cease work if risks to human safety or the environment occur.

The proactive management of safety behaviours in this fair, transparent and repeatable manner will serve to greatly increase accountability and trust, while strengthening our overall safety culture.

Health, Safety & Environment (HSE)

With the deepening of the relationships built across our regions (especially North America and Australia), we strengthened our HSE management systems in FY16 to enable growth into higher risk industries in Australia. A highlight was securing a place on the Chevron Australia Environmental Services Panel and achieving CHESM accreditation. We were also engaged to design and build a helicopter facility for BP in South Australia.

Our challenge going forward is to expand global consistency in our HSE approach to further align with client expectations and enhance our position on global client panels.

Positive safety performance1

  • A 25% improvement in Positive Interactions2 was achieved compared to this time last year (3.62 per Full Time Equivalent (FTE) interactions against a target of 3.0). Positive Interactions measure the activities we undertake to positively influence our safety culture
  • A 15% reduction in Total Recordable Incident Rate (TRIR) was achieved compared to FY15 results. Actual rates can be seen below:

Lead v Lag Indicators (1 million hours) - Global

Lead lag indicators

In summary, our efforts over the past year have resulted in both lead and lag indicators heading in the right direction.

Client recognition

Our clients continue to recognise the vital role we play in keeping their people, projects and communities safe.

Organisations such as Shell, ExxonMobil, Philipps 66, BP Australia, and Melbourne Water have commended us on attaining high standards in health, safety and environmental management on their projects.



We have completed our recertification audit and LRQA is recommending an upgrade to ISO 9001:2015 (excluding North America). This upgrade calls for more focus on leadership and risk-based thinking. Our North American operations will seek to have their regional quality system upgraded in FY17.


In alignment with the United Nation’s Global Compact (UNGC) guidelines and other corporate governance initiatives including anti-fraud, we continued our journey to heightened levels of integrity in FY16. Our efforts are guided by the GHD Integrity Management System.


During the year, we continued investigative efforts to align global environmental efforts under shared reporting protocols.


At the completion of GHD’s seventh year as a signatory of the UNGC, we continued our path to better understand how we can grow and strengthen our business. We are firmly committed to embedding strategies that will further engrain the principles of the UNGC within GHD.

Download our Sustainability Report for more information:

1. See Performance Highlights page for safety indicators 2. Positive Interactions measure the activities we undertake to positively influence our safety culture.