Safety culture in supply chains : 'Customer is king'

Wallace, Angela M., Davey, Jeremy D., & Edwards, Jason (2012) Safety culture in supply chains : 'Customer is king'. In Occupational Safety in Transport Conference, 20-21 September 2012, Crowne Plaza, Gold Coast, QLD.

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Abstract

Despite the presence of many regulations governing the operation of heavy vehicles and supply chains in Australia, the truck driving sector continues to have the highest incidence of fatal injuries compared to all other industries. The working environment has been the focus of attention by safety researchers during the past few decades, with particular consideration been given to the concept ‘safety culture’ and how to maintain, modify and advance responses to occupational risk. One important aspect of the heavy industry which sets it apart is the existence of cultural or sub-cultural influences at an industry wide and occupation-specific level rather than organisational level. This paper reports on the findings of stakeholder’s perceptions of the influences of power and control, and culture on industry safety. In-depth structured interviews were conducted during 2011 with Australian industry stakeholders (n=31). The questioning surrounded decision-making processes with regards to identifying risks, self-monitoring and reducing risky activities; as well as how power-affected relationships may influence the operational performance of supply chains and impacts on driver safety. One of the most significant findings from these interviews relates to the notion of power. The perception that the ‘Customer is King’ was widely viewed, with the majority of stakeholders believing that there exists a ‘master slave mentality’ in the industry. There appears to be great frustration in the industry as to the apparent immunity of customers (particularly retail supply chains) to their responsibilities. There was also a strong perception that the customer holds the balance of power by covertly employing remuneration-related incentives and pressures. Smaller trucking companies are perceived as being more vulnerable to the pressure of customer expectations.

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ID Code: 59088
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: No
ISBN: 9781921897535
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > PUBLIC HEALTH AND HEALTH SERVICES (111700) > Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety (111705)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety - Qld (CARRS-Q)
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Psychology & Counselling
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2012 [please consult the author]
Deposited On: 11 Feb 2014 22:55
Last Modified: 13 Feb 2014 06:24

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