Safety First: 33 Years without Lost Time Accident
Invista, a producer of nylon fibers, supports many end uses including performance surface materials, apparel, and intermediates. Kenco currently manages a 490,000 square foot distribution center for Invista. This DC has 37 employees, shipping 11,400,000 pounds and supporting 1,980 orders monthly.
Kenco always seeks to create a safe and productive warehouse facility. Ensuring that employees act in a safe manner and have a secure environment in which to work in is crucial to a successful warehouse operation.
Kenco’s achievement is built around the core of our success, the development of a safety culture and mindset. This culture involves every associate, but must start at the top where expectations are set as we lead by example. Listed below are a few steps that have supported Kenco’s success:
- Involve the associates as best practices are developed to ensure safety is incorporated throughout every procedure that is written
- Safety must be integrated into daily work life by way of toolbox meetings as well as structured monthly training
- As new team members are required, we make every effort to search for associates possessing similar values where working safe is their top priority and focus
- New members must undergo extensive training to provide them with the knowledge, support, and understanding of how to work safely in our facility on a daily basis
- Taking risk that could endanger self, others, or product is strictly forbidden and is an understood condition of employment
- All associates are encouraged to notify management of any potential safety issues so resolution can be made to eliminate any possible accidents
- Developing an atmosphere where our associates want to become engaged, connected, and part of the solution is critical to our success. Their safety suggestions are reviewed with much attention, detail, and follow-up
- In the event of an incident, a thorough RCA (root cause analysis) is conducted to learn, eliminate, and prevent the issue from reoccurring
- Celebrating achievement and mile stones is important. We set aside several occasions throughout the year to recognize our success. This is accomplished through safety dinners and drawings which allow us to express our appreciation for a safe workplace
Our number one enemy is complacency. It lurks behind every corner and must be dealt with on a daily basis. This is why the toolbox meeting is so important to maintaining our safety record. It’s designed to plant the seed of safety every day in an effort to ward off the enemy of becoming content.
The Invista site has achieved 33 years without a lost time work accident while improving productivity in the warehouse processes by 20% between 2007 and 2009. This proves that productivity and safety can be improved simultaneously. With a continued safety culture and mindset, Kenco and Invista will maintain this safety excellence for years to come.