Navigating TRIR Towards Safety Excellence

December 14, 2023

Ensuring the safety of employees in the workplace is not just a legal obligation for employers. It is a fundamental, ethical responsibility for all businesses, including MMI Industrial & Steel. The well-being of our employees is a priority, as it directly correlates to the overall success and sustainability of our organization. We must continually assess and enhance safety protocols to protect our most valuable asset – our employees. MMI has made significant strides in this direction through the management and reduction of our Total Recordable Incident Rate or TRIR.

TRIR is a vital tool for organizations committed to prioritizing the safety and wellbeing of its employees. Using a formula, it calculates the rate of recordable workplace incidents per certain number of hours worked within that organization. According to Brian Gafford, Safety Director for MMI, TRIR includes cases where an employee is injured, becomes ill, or has an accident that requires medical treatment beyond first aid or results in lost workdays. Overall, it provides a comprehensive view of a company’s safety record, considering not only frequency of incidents, but also severity.

Beyond the immediate concern for employee welfare, prioritizing safety has far-reaching implications for MMI’s operations and, surprisingly, for our customer’s experience. When employees feel secure and protected in their work environment, they are more likely to be engaged, productive, and motivated. This positive workplace culture enhances internal processes and significantly influences the quality of products and services delivered to our customers. Ultimately, a safe and supportive work environment fosters a sense of trust, loyalty, and efficiency, translating into enhanced customer satisfaction and long-term business success.

In 2019, MMI faced challenges related to its Total Recordable Incident Rate (TRIR), prompting a reevaluation of the company's commitment to employee safety. Fast forward to December 2023, and we have made substantial progress, experiencing an 89% decrease in TRIR, marking a significant improvement from 2019. This positive trend underscores the successful implementation of strategic initiatives aimed at enhancing workplace safety and managing incident rates effectively.

MMI implemented a well-rounded approach to control and manage its Total Recordable Incident Rate (TRIR). The company strategically focused on injury and incident management, fostering a robust system for prompt response, thorough investigations, and corrective actions. This has been the primary factor to affect our TRIR. Another momentous role has been played by management and leadership who have actively participated in cultivating a safety-first culture throughout the organization. Emphasizing the provision of high-quality Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and tools demonstrated MMI's commitment to employee safety, while an increase in safety professional staffing at key projects bolstered safety presence and employee management. Continued training initiatives ensured employees were well-versed in safety protocols, collectively contributing to a significant reduction in TRIR. These comprehensive strategies collectively underscore MMI's commitment to creating a safe work environment and achieving positive results in workplace safety.

Although not as important as employee safety, TRIR also directly influences Experience Modification Rate (EMR or e-mod). E-mod is a metric which utilizes historical workers' compensation claims data to evaluate a company's safety performance relative to other businesses in the same industry. Higher TRIR can lead to increased workers' compensation claims, potentially raising e-mod and subsequently affecting our insurance costs. By improving TRIR, MMI can reduce workers' compensation claims, lowering e-mod, and potentially decreasing our insurance expenses. Overhead savings contributes to our ability to provide competitive rates for goods and services for our customers.

In addition to competitive rates, MMI's achievement of a consistently low Total Recordable Incident Rate (TRIR) holds other substantial benefits for our customers. Firstly, a low TRIR serves as a powerful indicator of a safe work environment. This translates into enhanced Quality Assurance for customers. It suggests that MMI’s commitment to safety directly contributes to better quality products and services. Employees working in a secure setting are more likely to deliver superior outputs that align with customer expectations. Additionally, the stability and reliability associated with a low TRIR position MMI as a consistent, dependable partner. With fewer disruptions caused by workplace incidents or accidents, customers can rely on MMI for more predictable delivery schedules, reduced delays, and heightened operational reliability.

Furthermore, the positive safety record fosters trust and a good reputation, essential factors for customer satisfaction. Customers often prefer businesses that prioritize safety, and MMI's low TRIR reflects a commitment to ethical practices and employee well-being. This commitment not only builds trust with customers but also contributes to the company's reputation for responsibility and reliability. Ultimately, the low TRIR at MMI benefits customers by ensuring a secure and stable partnership, characterized by high-quality deliverables, consistency, and the assurance of a business that prioritizes safety and operational excellence.

MMI’s road to a more favorable TRIR has been paved with hard work from everyone across the organization. Brian Gafford expresses pride in MMI's positive TRIR trend, emphasizing the collaboration across departments and the commitment to continuous improvement. He states, "I am proud to be part of this company and the collaboration between departments that have had such an impressive impact on our safety culture.”

MMI's positive TRIR trend reflects a commitment to continuous improvement, demonstrating responsiveness to incidents and implementing corrective actions to prevent their recurrence. Our journey towards safety excellence, as reflected in our declining TRIR, emphasizes our dedication to the well-being of our employees and our commitment to delivering high-quality products and services. As Brian Gafford rightly states about this positive trend, “It is a testament to the shared accomplishment of the entire organization. It represents collective efforts from management, supervisors, and workers working together toward a common goal of ensuring a safe workplace.” It all comes together, instilling a sense of pride and confidence in our company's safety culture.

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