Our 10-Year Strategy
At work, at play and at home, we need safe technical systems. Everywhere.
We are committed to working with industry and investing in our services and products to prevent accidents.
We want to be known for...
Knowledge of the underlying root causes of failure in technical systems, coming from a clear understanding of safety risks.
Ingenious employees who seek knowledge, build strong networks and share information.
Our client-centred solutions
Products and services that support the management of technical system risks and are informed by a continual focus on clients, their industries and their businesses.
A culture where employees proactively generate and apply ideas for the benefit of safety.
Become a knowledge-based business
by evolving the sophistication of safety risk management.
Grow marketable services and products
to support industry innovation and benefit a more diverse client base.
What does it mean to be a knowledge-based business?
We know a lot about safety oversight.
We want to turn that knowledge into...
Developing IT tools to connect clients and staff.
Capturing, analyzing and sharing data to make better decisions about safety.
Sharing knowledge that will help clients come up with their own safety solutions.
It's good for everyone
Good for us
A knowledge-based business model means we have broader influence over safety outcomes and more financial resilience to help deliver on our mandate.
Good for society
Creating better value for clients, for the safety system, and for society means offering better safety solutions. When clients, industry and the public participate, we can develop and implement better risk-based solutions together.
All this in support of our mission:
To build confidence in safety systems for life - through a focus on risk and support for innovation.
Shift from correction to prevention
- Share safety knowledge
- Build safety leadership
- Apply a risk-based approach
- Implement sound policy supported by regulatory instruments
Help our clients succeed
- Build effective and efficient core services
- Gain more client insight
- Provide new and more valued services
For our people...
Create a culture of future-thinkers who are passionate about safety
- Encourage systems focus
- Connect each person's work to the cause
- Create an open organization structure
Develop a business model for growth
- Coordinate and leverage our relationships, human and financial capital
- Improve our financial resilience
- Optimize the value of our investments
Elevating Safety to New Levels
In 2007, tragedy struck the elevating industry when an elevator maintenance mechanic died because he was crushed between the elevator car cab and the hoistway wall. An investigation by WorkSafeBC and the BC Safety Authority (BCSA) revealed the accident was a result of unsafe work practices.
This fatal incident drove industry members and the BCSA to passionately work towards a comprehensive certification program for all elevator mechanics – something that did not previously exist.
It was a daunting task considering that British Columbia has had a robust elevating industry for many years. Today, BC has some 22,600 active elevators with 850 new units being added each year. These units are being installed, maintained, repaired and altered by an estimated 1,100 mechanics in the province. But the safety of the elevator workers and the public has always been paramount so certification development became an important goal for both industry and the BCSA.
“The public who ride elevators, escalators, and moving walks are relying on the industry and BC Safety Authority to keep all elevating devices in the province safe.”
As stated by the Western Region of the Canadian Elevator Contractors Association: “The public who ride elevators, escalators, and moving walks are relying on the industry and BC Safety Authority to keep all elevating devices in the province safe. Certification will improve safety, both to the riding public and workers.”
The work in developing the Elevator Mechanic Certification Program has been extensive. It involved many milestones including, among others, establishing standards for apprenticeship programs, developing skills passports and exam banks and submitting a regulatory amendment.
The program fits well into BCSA’s 10-Year Strategy and characterizes BCSA’s far-reaching view to “build your confidence in safety systems for life.” And while the program comes into effect in 2013, it will be closely observed in anticipation of the first generation of mechanics completing the program in 2018.
The Elevator Mechanic Certification Program will be open to industry improvements over time. According to the International Union of Elevator Constructors, Local 82: “Any attempt to improve industry safety standards can only be deemed a positive step in providing fully qualified trades people.”
As one of Canada’s leading regulators in elevating devices, the BCSA will continue to work with industry to implement, regularly review and enhance BC’s Elevator Mechanic Certification Program. This is just one example of how BCSA works towards the vision of: Safe Technical Systems. Everywhere.
For more information, please read the Elevator Mechanic Certification Program.
- Not-for-profit BCSA
- Code-based inspection
- First non regulatory clients
- Accident Prevention Model
- Employee professional training and performance planning
- Service intensity 1:1
- Safety management plan services designed
- Risk-based resource deployment
- Partial implementation of new IT system
- 10-Year Strategy
- Service intensity 1:100
- Improved incident investigation program
- Elevating devices mechanic certification program fully operational
- Broader uptake on safety management plan services
- Expanded contact centre & online self-service
- Human resources managment system implemented
- New IT system fully operational
- Expanded use of declarations
- New certification & licensing programs
- Enhanced Resource Allocation Program (RAP)
- Resource strategy for talent acquisition & development
- Enhanced business model
- Integrated risk information system
- 75% of oversight physical
- 25% of oversight knowledge-based
- Culture of learning and continual improvement
- 15% ROI in new IT
- Risk control strategies connected to safety outcomes
- Risk-based approaches commonly used by clients & other partnering regulators
- Addition of a new business
- 20% of revenue from sources unknown in 2012
The Case For Change
Today, BC Safety Authority’s (BCSA) business and regulatory model is in transition. We are moving away from a wholly inspection-based model supported by prescriptive regulations, which is increasingly unsustainable because it encourages regulated parties to rely on safety officers for quality control. Not only does this pose non-recoverable cost implications for BCSA, but it is contrary to a collaborative safety system in which all participants share a sense of ownership and responsibility
“It became clear very early on in BCSA’s existence that we had to do things more efficiently and effectively.”
It became clear very early on in BCSA’s existence that we had to do things more efficiently and effectively. This led to the creation of our ‘Accident Prevention Model’, which provides a framework for risk control activities through assessment, research, education and enforcement. While this model has created regulatory improvement, it poses challenges to our financial sustainability, due to the discrepancy between our fee-based services and the actual services we deliver. The current model also does not appropriately differentiate among clients based on their level of risk management, skill and safety awareness. Clients need to be able to associate value with all work we do to maintain and enhance safety. They need to be able to verify that their own best practices are in line with safety requirements to protect all those interacting with their equipment and work.
While inspection and assessment continue to be integral to what we do, in order to develop a more comprehensive regulatory model, we have begun to also offer “outcome-based” oversight. We have developed new tools, such as Safety Management Plans (SMP) and Equivalent Standards Approaches (ESA) to establish clear expectations around risk management outcomes while providing flexibility in how regulated parties achieve these outcomes.
THE CASE FOR CHANGE
Making a successful transition from prescriptive regulation to a more outcomes based and market-driven focus on service delivery presents challenges that any future strategy for the organization will have to address:
- Gaining the support and participation of regulated parties;
- Demonstrating value and remaining relevant and effective;
- Establishing a defensible, workable funding model.
BCSA is evolving its business model to address these challenges in order to remain viable and continue to influence improvements within the safety system over the long term.
As we developed our 10-year strategy, we considered which changes in the business environment would likely impact the organization in coming years. These were explored using a scenario planning methodology in 2011 and provide the context which informs both our short and long term organizational planning:
Public interest in open data and information technology will continue to increase, impacting all industries, particularly in areas of data analytics and automation. This trend is in line with BCSA’s strategy to create an environment where people installing and maintaining technical systems take more accountability for the safety of equipment and their work. BCSA will be using “open data” principles to make information more available, thereby increasing the ability of clients and stakeholders to use, build and share safety knowledge. This will not only improve client and stakeholder insights on safety but also create opportunities to reduce the costs of safety and risk management.
Given the speed of change in technology, BCSA will need to support client innovation by building technical systems expertise to compliment its existing knowledge of individual pieces of equipment.
We anticipate the pendulum will continue to swing between de-regulation and re-regulation, requiring BCSA to demonstrate consistent value and relevance in all environments. Changes posed by national and provincial political shifts are possible, and BCSA will continue to adapt to the political landscape and engage with stakeholders at both the provincial and national levels.
Independent of governing party, policy development and regulation changes will continue to be essential. Certain requirements of BCSA are mandated in the legislation that created the organization, the costs of which are not directly recoverable from clients or stakeholders. BCSA must determine how to continue to fulfill its mandate and remain financially sustainable.
As the older generation begins to retire, we recognize that a workforce deficit lies ahead. Consequently, regulators and their clients will experience a shortage of skilled labour.
BCSA will need to appeal to younger generations to attract and retain top talent. As well, we will have to look for ways to do more with less, deploying our workforce in ever more efficient and effective ways. BCSA may also have a role in encouraging youth to enter the trades or engineering to assure the availability of a qualified work force.
Movement of people globally will further enhance BC’s multi-cultural society, highlighting an opportunity and the need for diverse employment policies, client communications, and stakeholder engagement.
Fewer workers available and our requirement for staff with skills in risk, audit, and integrated technical systems safety means that our business model must adapt from offering transactions for revenue, such as permits and inspections, to a multi-faceted client relationship model where we offer specialized knowledge and analysis.
Global trade will persist and market-based economies will continue to dominate. This presents BCSA with opportunities to expand our influence within BC, reach out to other Canadian provinces, and even explore ways to globally improve technical systems safety. Conversely, the risk of increased globalization is that BCSA’s jurisdiction may also be challenged by other technical safety organizations.
Our existing and potential clients will increasingly insist on efficient, excellent service as they compete in a global economy. They will question whether multiple agencies conducting similar tasks, such as inspection, enforcement and investigation, are necessary within BC. Understanding innovative regulatory products, and engaging wider expertise will position BCSA as a capable regulator, in touch with world-class practices for the future.
Markets will remain unable to properly price social values like safety. This will increase pressure to develop a business model that integrates both social and economic success measures. While our business clients see the value in paying for a healthy safety system, they will continue to demand reduced transaction costs and increased efficiencies in safety oversight. Our future business model must be able to continually evolve to maintain its ongoing viability.
Given the above, consolidation of oversight entities is a future possibility. BCSA needs to be positioned as an extremely effective provider of valuable knowledge-based safety and risk management services, or risk being absorbed by another safety regulator.
State of Safety
In addition to this forward-looking plan, information, statistics and analysis on technical systems safety in British Columbia for the prior year are reported in our annual State of Safety Report. This report provides an account of incidents and hazards reported and investigated, non-compliances to standards found during physical inspections, and enforcement actions completed during the reporting period. The report also includes a discussion of trends and observations from technical specialists, providing context for many of BCSA’s initiatives and priorities.
This publication can be viewed in its entirety in the ‘About’ section of our website at www.technicalsafetybc.ca.
Also look at our latest business plans