Victory Leisure Homes has become the first caravan maker in the UK to be granted the coveted ISO 45001 standard for occupational health and safety.
The award comes after Victory Leisure Homes underwent a gruelling 14-month period reworking its health and safety processes, followed by two health and safety audits by UK standards body BSI Group.
Achieving the certification means the business is now part of a small group of British companies that exhibit the highest standards in health and safety practices and procedures.
Gary Corlyon, Director of Operations at Victory Leisure Homes, said the achievement had been made more impressive by the fact the company had never undertaken an ISO award before.
“Most companies who go for ISO 45001 will already have ISO 9001 so know the framework they have to work to,” Mr Corlyon said.
“We didn’t have this so had nothing to compare the process to. Once we’d applied to do the accreditation, an external person came in to audit our processes and take us through the mandatory regulations we had to meet.
“I recognised at that point it was going to be a big undertaking, but one we knew was worth embarking on because it would make our working environment safer.”
Mr Corlyon described the process as a ‘cultural step’ which has seen the company move from a position of uncertainty about its health and safety requirements to having a strong culture of safety across the whole of the business.
He added that to be successful in achieving the standard, the business had to demonstrate buy-in from all levels of the company, from shop floor up to senior management.
He said: “One of the most important aspects of the standard is meeting the statutory requirements and actually demonstrating those. It is not good enough just to talk about them. For example, the senior team in the business needed to explicitly demonstrate leadership and communication and how they are implementing these.
“But underpinning all of this is the simple proposition that people deserve to come to work and go home safely, so if you start from that standpoint, the rest falls into place.
“Going through the process has brought some real benefits to the business. Accidents and near misses are both down and it has become a happier place to work.”
Mr Corlyon added he was delighted with the achievement and how everyone at Victory Leisure Homes had embraced the process.
“Achieving ISO 45001 has brought out the best in people here,” he said.
“The whole company pulled together to improve our safety processes and that has been fantastic to be a part of.
“It is now about sustainability. Getting the certification is just the start. We now want to make sure we hold on to it and improve year on year, because that is the best way to ensure everyone who works at Victory, and anyone who visits, leaves the site safely.”