Human factors briefing note no. 7 – Training and competence

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  • Published: July 2011
  • REF/ISBN:
  • Edition: 2nd
  • Status: New

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Training: Training helps people acquire the skills, knowledge and attitudes to make them competent in the health and safety aspects of their work. It includes formal off the job training, instruction to individuals and groups, and on the job coaching and counselling. Source: Reference 1.

‘SQEP’: The term ‘SQEP’ is used in industry to mean‘suitably qualified and experienced person’. SQEP may be considered as a criterion for competence. Also, ‘competence’ and ‘competency’ are both used to mean a measure of an employee’s knowledge, skill and experience.

Why training and competence?

Having competent staff is critical to running a safe operation. They should be competent in their day to day work but also in health and safety matters – for example, recognising hazards and risks at work. Training of personnel is a key factor in establishing a good safety culture.

There are many methods that can be applied to the key stages of establishing competence. Some will be more suitable than others to your particular needs. Training should not be used to try to overcome poor design elsewhere, for example, poor design of workplace, tools, equipment or procedures.

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