Exploring the use of a web-based system in reporting, recording, monitoring and managing occupational safety and health incidents in Uganda’s Construction Industry
Ngobi, Timothy Gideon
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The construction industry is by nature a very risky industry in terms of Occupational Safety and Health (OSH). It is prone to many incidents and responsible for high fatality of workers in many countries. Despite their high frequency and severity, construction incidents are usually underreported. The level of incident recording and reporting is largely dependent on the nature of the reporting system or process. Yet efficient and accurate recording and reporting of incidents facilitates improvement in OSH performance at all levels (personal, team, organizational and national). The aim of this research, therefore, was to explore the use of a web-based system in, Reporting, Recording, Monitoring and Managing (RRMM) OSH incidents in Uganda’s construction industry as an alternative to the current process. In the study, the researcher described the current/ as-is process of RRMM OSH incident in Uganda and identify some of its weaknesses. A web-based system for to facilitate RRMM OSH incidents was then designed with the aim of addressing some of the identified weaknesses, and finally, the designed system was evaluated. The study adopted process modelling (PM) for the first objective which was to describe and document the current process of RRMM OSH incidents and to identify its weaknesses. PM involved process discovery done through content analysis of existing literature, process mapping using Business Process Model and Notation (BPMN) with Microsoft Visio 2019, and verification of the process through interviews with Subject Matter Experts (SMEs). The web-based system to aid RRMM in the construction industry was designed using the System Development Method (SDM) to complete the second objective. Finally, the evaluation of the designed web-based system was done through a questionnaire survey administered to 123 potential users of the system in order to complete the third objective. All the data from the PM were qualitatively analysed, while the data the questionnaire survey were statistically and qualitatively analysed. The findings from PM revealed that the as-is process of RRMM OSH incidents is broken down into four sub-processes: Workplace incident reporting management, recording and compensation (WIRMR&C); Hospitalization of Victim (HOS); Incident reporting to the Police (IR2P); and the National Incident Reporting, Management, Monitoring (NIRMM). Several weaknesses such as lack of centralized recording of construction OSH incidents and lack of provisions for reporting minor OSH incidents at national level were identified about the as-is process. A functional web-based system named (OSH IRS) was the output of the second objective. The results from evaluating the designed web-based system (OSH IRS) showed that it was perceived to be efficient and effective in facilitating incident RRMM, could address distribution consideration, and it was also institutionally feasible. Although it was perceived to have benefits, it was perceived to have high cost implications. This research provides a feasible option for Uganda’s construction sector, and developing countries alike, for bettering OSH incident reporting and monitoring.