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KNAUF DRYWALL Secures Five Stars For Safety

Knauf Drywall – the UK’s leading manufacturer of lightweight building products and systems – has had its industry-leading performance in Health & Safety recognised with a Five Star Audit award, the highest possible, from the British Safety Council (BSC).

The achievement – for its Immingham and Sittingbourne sites – is not just some inward-facing exercise: it hugely benefits customers in terms of improved product quality, enhanced order accuracy and much better service. This is because the health and safety appraisal process doesn’t take place in isolation – it not simply being about risk management – but is part of an integrated management approach to safety, environmental practice and quality.

The BSC’s Five Star Audit is the internationally recognized benchmark of best practice that goes well beyond legal compliance and is used by leading organizations throughout the world. Knauf’s achievement in meeting its highest standard shows the company’s dedication to meeting the highest standards of quality throughout its organisation.

Apart from improving quality and service to customers, the BSC audit process also delivers three more important benefits to the company. First, it results in physical improvements to site – such as improved guarding of machinery and traffic management; second, management is improved through an increased focus on organisation and comprehension of works processes and, finally, productivity is enhanced as the sense of managerial commitment to improvement produces beneficial behavioral changes in the workforce as a whole.

Indeed, the programme has been so effective for Knauf Drywall in the UK that it is now being applied across the group globally – with a view to the development of a single international Knauf Standard.

As part of its own culture of continuous improvement, Knauf Drywall spent two years working towards the audit by first shadowing the BSC method. This a structured approach culminated in a stunning audit performance, the company racking up a superb mark of 93.6%. It chose BSC as auditor because external verification of the company’s progress was essential and BSC’s charitable, not-for-profit status ensures its independence and underpins its reputation as a leader in the safety field.

The BSC examined every aspect of Knauf Drywall’s occupational health and safety performance, inspecting its factories in Immingham and Sittingbourne and reviewing the training, monitoring and activity of staff both there and in the field. Its audit not only identifies areas of strength and weakness, but also supports a structured programme of continuous improvement for the future.

The company will also seek to be re-audited every two years – even though there is no ‘renewal’ obligation – in order to maintain the integrity and credibility of the award.

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