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Construction industry is a sector of national economy engaged in preparation of land and construction, repair of buildings, structures and other properties. Malaysias construction industries recorded a GDP growth of 1.6% in the fourth quarter of 2008 in comparison to 3.9% and 1.2% in the second and third quarters of 2008. It turned around to register a small positive growth of 0.6% in the first quarter of 2009 (CIDB, 2010). Although Malaysia had recorded an increase economically, this does not mean Malaysia can settle down comfortably. The major issues in almost all developing construction industries are safety culture involving accidents. The statistics of accidents at construction sites give us proper picture of Malaysia which in need of critical, huge and fast overhaul from the current site safety.

Investigation done by CIDB (2010) showed that construction industry in Malaysia is the sector that contributes the highest rate of accidents categorized in the involvement of death. High rate of accidents can be directly related to a poor safety performance as suggested by Ng et al (2005). Based on the investigation by CIDB (2010), it can be said that construction industry is the most dangerous industry in Malaysia. Having the highest number of fatalities, construction industry became the most crucial industry in the need of effective safety measures and safety management system in the effort to achieve better safety performance.



Reports from DOSH indicated an increasing case of workplace accidents in construction industry. Therefore, surface the need of serious progress of safety

implementation among construction industries. In order to nurture and strengthen the safety performance implementation among workers, it is important to know what are the factors that influence safety performance in the implementation of safety across organization. Therefore, in order to achieve a higher or better safety performance it is essential to first identify what are the factors that influence the successfulness of the safety performance itself. By identifying the factors that can influence either positive and negative safety performance in construction sites, management can enhance the well-being of personnel thus decrease the numbers of accidents and perhaps preventing any safety events that involved fatalities.



The objective of this study is to identify the success factors that influence safety performance in construction site.




What the factors that influence safety performance in construction site?



This study mainly focused on G7 contractors in Pahang region. G7 contractors are contractors that have no limit in managing project. In other words, G7 class contractors can execute any project of any amount without limit in tender capacity.



This study will provide information factors that influence safety performance in construction site. This study would be beneficial to any building construction contractor in Malaysia such as CIDB, Syarikat Perumahan Negara and other small organization. Besides contractors, this study will also be beneficial to the Department of Occupational Safety and Health Human Resource Department Malaysia whereby the result of this study can be used as a guideline in implementing a more efficient safety performance of building construction industries in Malaysia.



H1: Management activities have significant relationship with safety performance in construction site.

H2: Incentive factors have significant relationship with safety performance in construction site.

H3: Policy factors have significant relationship with safety performance in construction site.

H4: Personnel factors have significant relationship with safety performance in construction site.

H5: Technical factors have significant relationship with safety performance in construction site.

H6: Process factors have significant relationship with safety performance in construction site.




Management activities will positively influence safety performance in

construction site.

2. site.

Incentive factors will positively influence safety performance in construction


Policy factors will positively influence safety performance in construction site.

4. site.

Personnel factors will positively influence safety performance in construction

5. site 6.

Technical factors will positively influence safety performance in construction

Process factors will positively influence safety performance in construction site





In the Department of Safety and Health annual report for the year end 2010 showed the statistic of occupational accidents by sector for the category of death as shown in the graph. The graph showed that up until 2010, construction contributes the most in the event of occupational accidents involving death among other sector in Malaysia.

Figure 2.0: (Adopted from Department of Safety and Health (2010), Occupational accidents by sector for the category of death.



There were many studies conducted in identifying factors that influence and the methods of measuring safety performance in organizations and construction that can be used in the development of literature review for this study.

Safety performance evaluation is essential in determining the effectiveness of a particular organizations safety management system (Sgourou, Katsakiori, Goutsos, & Manatakis, 2010). Sgourou et al (2010) also suggested several factors in the effort to provide holistic approach in measuring safety performance such as technical, organizational, and human factors. Another similar study to develop measurement of safety performance conducted by Ng et al (2005) suggested 4 criteria that can be used to measure the level of safety performance which is accident rate, incident rate, experience modification rating and score card in order to define the level of safety performance of a particular safety system in the organization.

Safety performance can be influenced by many factors that can be associated with the measurement of safety performance itself. Safety regulations have been an element that have been close related towards influencing safety performance as most literature for safety performance stated the importance of safety regulations in workplace (DeArmond, Smith, Wilson, Chen, & Cigularov, 2011). DeArmond et al (2011) further stated that use of equipment and tools in the effort to carry certain tasks, proper use of personal protective equipment housekeeping can also be an influencing factors contributing towards changes in safety performance.

In a different study conducted by Teo et al (2005), four main factors that can influence safety in construction site were described as policy, process, personnel and incentive factors. In the effort of management to identify, manage, contro and respond towards safety risks that can occur in construction site, Teo et al (2005) suggested the

use of a framework that specify all the four elements including the sub-factors under each element. The 3P+I framework is the framework that specify the factors that contributes towards the level of safety in construction site for managers to adopt and use for better safety performance.

Figure 2.1: Adopted from (Teo, Ling, & Chong, 2005); the 3P + I framework for managing safety in construction site.

High standard of safety regulations and standards in workplace have significant relationship in improving safety performance of organization with the elements described as project characteristics and nature of work, organization and structure, collective values, norms and behavior, and individual competence and attitudes (Torner & Pousette, 2009).

The factors and measurement of safety performance evolves from time to time according to the nature of work involved in a particular project as project is characterized as unique and different project consist of both similar and different tasks and activities. Therefore, continuous research on factors influencing and methods of safety performance measurement must be done to support constant changes in working environment and to get in-line with current technologies for better results and effectiveness in process implementation.



Management activities are important in the effort to prevent, mitigate and respond towards safety in working environment. Accidents in workplace can be directly related with the role of management. Fang et al (2004) highlighted that the cause of accidents occurring at workplaces points towards management failures and represents the real underlying causes of accidents.

Management activities concerning safety is the act of managing and implementing safety measures for employees to abide. In other words, safety management activities is the management itself acting as an element in the effort to permeate the sense of safety to employees in any ways and forms possible. Safety management relates to the actual practices, roles practices and functions associated with remaining safe (Mearns, Whitaker, & Flin, 2003)

According to Mearns, Whitaker and Flin (2003), consistent commitment from management towards safety can be in terms of prioritizing safety over production, high safety profile in meetings, personal involvement of managers and supervisors in meetings and walkabouts, face to face meetings and also contracts that include safety.


A study conducted by Fang, Xie, Huang and Li (2004) suggested 8 main elements in safety management activities. Their study then used factor analysis to analyze all the 8 elements to determine the acceptability level for each elements and from the 8 elements, only 5 were acceptable; Safety inspection, safety meeting, safety regulation enforcement, safety education and safety communication. These 5 elements will be used as the elements of management activities for this study.


Safety Inspection

Safety inspection is the act of inspecting or monitoring the safety level at workplace done by either supervisors, foremen or other related parties with the authority or the qualification to do so. Safety inspection implies the involvements of supervisors and foremen in routine safety management (Fang, Xie, Huang, & Li, 2004). Safety inspection is also an important element to measure the managerial role in improving organizations safety performance which can be considered as a benchmarking tool to evaluate safety performance. Continuous improvement in safety performance can be achieved by implementing a constant safety inspection at workplace where safety performance is benchmarked using inspection as a tool (Ng, Cheng, & Skitmore, 2005).

Safety inspection is considered as the key in improving safety performance in workplace (Fang, Xie, Huang, & Li, 2004). This is similar with a study conducted by Mearns, Whitaker and Flin (2003) that found where inspections were frequent, the number of accidents rate is lower.

The presence of managers, supervisors and foremen which directly involved in monitoring and inspecting employee brings to a higher level of safety performance in organization which represents a low accidents rate. Low accident rate organizations can be characterized as the organization with the presence of upper managers who


personally involved in safety activities; prioritization of safety meetings and in decisions making process concerning safety activities (Mearns, Whitaker, & Flin, 2003).

In order to perform well, management activities in regard of safety must include inspection as a requirement. As mentioned earlier, the application of inspection as an element in commitment of management towards workplace safety will have significant effect towards safety performance. This is further described as an organization that is well performed in respect of activities that prevent injuries and ill health where it includes inspection as one of the activities involved (Sgourou, Katsakiori, Goutsos, & Manatakis, 2010).


Safety Meeting

Safety meeting is a term used by managers or supervisors which involved the event of gathering all related parties in the project to brief them about safety in workplace. Safety meeting can also be held by a safety specialist or safety officers. Safety meeting is also a medium for workers to directly report any safety related matters to managers. Safety meeting usually carried out early in the morning every day or at the start of every working period involving group of workers under the co-ordination of safety specialist and some time also spend reporting and discussing matters of safety that had happened the day before (Saurin, Formoso, & Cambraia, 2008).

Safety briefing (meeting) every morning or every starting of working period can be considered as an early warning system of safety matters involved in workplace. This can be so as in a safety meeting, everyone was briefed with all related matters of potential safety risks, report of previous accidents and near misses and also matters regarding personal protective equipment use.


The implementation of safety meetings will significantly bring impact towards safety performance in project construction site and also showed the commitment of management towards the safety of workers. Management plays a very important role in efficient and effective safety program from active involvement in safety related matters such as regular safety meetings and trainings (Aksorn & Hadikusumo, 2008).

A study conducted by Ng, Cheng and Skitmore (2005) found that increasing the frequency of safety meetings among workers and supervisors will significantly improve safety performance. Furthermore, Mearns, Whitaker and Flin (2003) in their study also found out that direct involvement of management in frequent and constant safety meetings will decrease the rate of accidents in workplace. Saurin, Formoso and Cambraia (2008) also stated that safety meetings is a good strategy to quickly disseminate reports to the whole workforce and at the same time establish an informal but systematic reporting mechanism without bureaucracy.


Safety Regulation Enforcement

Safety regulation enforcement is the act of management to enforce safety to workers by referring to strict regulation establish by the organization. Workplace safety involves regulations whereby workers are obligated to follow. Even so, sometimes these regulations were not taken seriously. According to Probst and Estrada (2010), enforcement of safety is the extent which supervisors provide praise for safety compliance and punishment for non-compliance. The failure to enforce safety among workers can result in high rate of injuries and accidents at work as further stated by Probst and Estrada (2010) where strict safety enforcement has shown influence towards safety outcomes and failure to do so were more likely to cause accidents and injuries in workplace.


The implementation of strict safety regulation enforcement will result in better performance in terms of safety. Employees will be given praises or incentives when complying with safety regulations and punished if they do not abide with the regulations. This can help enforcing a sense of safety behavior among workers which then can increase their performance in safety. Working conditions can improve with the help of supervisors or managers enforcing strict safety regulations among workers in the organization (Saurin, Formoso, & Cambraia, 2008).

Non-compliance of safety regulation can also be termed as violation. Workers sometime intentionally or unintentionally and constantly violating safety regulations which bring to the role of management to respond toward this threat. Therefore management commitment is important to enforce strict safety regulation process to counter this type of problem. Not confirming with safety regulation is known as violation and management should then provide means to enforce workers especially violators to obey the rules and regulations by providing effective mechanism to ensure less cases of safety rules and regulations violations (Saurin, Formoso, & Cambraia, 2008).

To highlight the importance of safety regulation enforcements, it is also listed as one of the important element in the role of UKs Health and Safety Executive (HSE) in explaining Construction Design Management (CDM) Regulations. The HSE was established alongside the Health and Safety Commission (HSC) under the Safety of Work Act (1974) which then became the primary safety legislation in UK (Baxendale & Jones, 2000). In the study conducted by Baxendale and Jones (2000) showed that the enforcement of regulations is the intention to secure compliance of workers towards safety regulations through giving advice.

The existence of strict safety regulations enforcement can result in higher safety performance among workers which characterized by the low rate of accidents, injuries and near misses incidents in workplace. The absence of safety regulations enforcement


can lead to vulnerable conditions on occupational health and safety for workers (Mohamed, Ali, & Tam, 2009).


Safety Education and Training

Safety education concerns the knowledge of a particular individual regarding safety matters whether in theoretical or practical way. Safety education measures the knowledge of individual about safety related matters. Fang et al. (2004) characterized safety education of individuals as hours and days of education received by certain position in an organization such as managers, supervisors, foremen and workers.

By providing workers with the appropriate knowledge and training that can suits the nature of working environment, the effect show significant increase in workers safety performance. Given periodic educational and safety training programs, workers can achieved an effective safety program which leads to a higher rate of safety performance (Aksorn & Hadikusumo, 2008). Aksom and Hadikusumo (2008) further addressed that in a working environment where most workers are uneducated and inexperienced, intensive safety training is needed in order for the project to achieve higher safety performance which characterized as the working environment with low rate of accidents and near misses.

In the effort of management to give commitment towards safety in workplace, a strong emphasis must be put on the importance of having workers with appropriate education and safety training suitable to their workplace and type of jobs requirements. How management values safety training among workers as priority refers to the extent of which training is accessible, relevant and comprehensive (Probst & Estrada, 2010). Probst and Estrada (2010) further discussed that, with the absence of proper education and training regarding safety matters can result in workers fail to identify things or


elements that constitutes an accident which will result in accident or near misses repetition.

Safety education and training is one of the methods or tools that management uses to show their commitment towards improving safety performance in the workplace. The application of safety training and education can significantly affect safety performance in the organization. A study conducted by Tam, Zeng and Deng (2004) identified lack of safety training as one of the elements in poor construction safety performance. This statement refers to the absence of safety training in construction safety performance will have negative impact towards rate of accidents and near misses which in other words will lead to poor safety performance in construction site. The importance of safety training is further supported by Chan et al (2010) that stated safety training as an important tool in mitigating site accidents and also considered as key factors affecting safety performance.


Safety Communication

Safety communication is an act where safety related matters are communicated among workers in the organization. Communication is also a medium to deliver and receive information related safety across the organization. Communication can be viewed as a medium or means to performance ends or as constitutive, as the end in itself and considered as an important non-technical skills required for managing workplace (Kim, Park, & Jung, 2008).

Safety related communication among workers and among workers and management can be a good way of transmitting information regarding safety matters which then can result in lower accidents and near misses rate in workplace environment. A study conducted by Michael, Guo, Wiedenbeck and Ray (2006) on the leadermember safety communications on the impact of subordinates safety outcomes found


that safety related communication will improve the subordinates safety practices and thus can reduce accidents.

Safety related communication can have significant impact towards the level of safety performance in workplace environment. Supervisors or managers that implement constant communication engagement with workers can keep workers updated with the current important and past important events regarding safety matters. Regular and direct communication stream between leader and subordinates is considered as valuable characteristic of any organization where it is essential in terms of achieving good and decent safety performance (Michael, Guo, Wiedenbeck, & Ray, 2006).

Michael et al. (2006) further stated that poor communication between management and subordinates is a primary reason for substandard behaviors ranging from poor safety performance to low productivity and morale. With an open safety related communication environment, management and workers can exchange information regarding safety directly and effectively without having to face barriers of bureaucracy. This then can result in establishment of mutual safety behaviors that benefits all parties. Under an open and constructive communication atmosphere, the leader and member would freely converse about routine and non-routine problems and engage in joint problem solving processes, which in the long run can result in behaviors that are mutually beneficial (Michael, Guo, Wiedenbeck, & Ray, 2006).

In improving safety performance in construction site, safety related communication is considered as one of management commitment towards safety of workers. Therefore, it is important for a particular construction site to have an effective communication regarding safety matters across the organization. This is supported by a study conducted by Kines et al. (2010) which found that the higher the frequencies of safety communication among workers and management will increase safety performance in construction site.




Incentives factor is the factor where certain kind of behavior is rewarded when specific requirements is achieved. In terms of safety, incentives are the method of rewarding the event of achieved requirements regarding safety in a particular process or project. Safety incentives are reward techniques used by organization to improve their health and safety result and also specifically designed to counter natural incentives to unsafe behavior (Haines III, Merrheim, & Roy, 2001).

The implementation of safety incentives program motivates workers to act and behave in a safe manner when executing particular tasks throughout a certain period of time determined by management or organization in order to keep up a decent safety performance in a working environment. Incentive programs can be considered as a psychological approach in which employees can be rewarded for safe work habit (Chan, Chan, & Choi, 2010).

Chan et al (2010) further stated that the main objective of incentives program is to minimize accidents and improve safety behaviors and safety related records. The positive outcomes that can result from the implementation of safety incentives program is supported by study conducted by Chan et al (2010).

Safety incentives significantly bring positive impact towards the improvement of safety performance itself. Safety incentives scheme or programs is considered as one of the main factors contributing towards successful and better safety performance in construction projects (Aksorn & Hadikusumo, 2008).

Study conducted by Teo, Ling and Chong (2005) highlighted framework for project managers to manage construction safety and mentioned incentive programs as


having 3 main elements of monetary incentives, non-monetary incentives and disciplinary action.

2.4.1 Monetary Incentives

Incentive is some kind of motivator to enforce required behavior towards people. People usually attracted with force of incentives such as rewards, recognition and benefits offered in a certain task end. Therefore, people tend to comply with the established behavior towards achieving the objective of tasks or projects to acquire the incentives offered.

Teo et al. (2005) stated that people will behave in ways that lead to desired outcomes if compliance to a source or medium such as safety regulations and rules will provide them with returns in the form of incentives. This statement also supported by a study conducted by Aksorn (2008) which discovers incentives in the form of monetary is a major motivational factor towards the improvement of safety performance in workplace environment especially construction sites.

Monetary incentive is the reward system that uses money as basis of rewards whereby eligible receiver will receive a certain amount of money at the end of any specified compliance of behavior. Monetary incentive is the common type of incentives available and is widely used in not just construction industry but also other safety related fields (Teo, Ling, & Chong, 2005). Teo et al (2005) further stated that monetary incentives are either used for giving monetary returns for safety performance of workers and also for supervisor safety incentives plan.


2.4.2 Non-Monetary Incentives

Non-monetary incentive has the same objectives as monetary incentives which are to reward personnel on their commitment towards safety performance. Behaviors concerning safety matters established in a particular policy or regulation of organization will be the measurement and determinant to rewards personnel. The thing that distinguishes monetary and non-monetary incentives is money. Whereby monetary incentives uses money as a reward, non-monetary incentives centered rewards such as promotion, holidays, retirement benefits etcetera. Non monetary incentives include personal recognition, promotion and pre-paid holiday packages for compliance behavior towards safety performance in the workplace (Teo, Ling, & Chong, 2005).

By establishing indirect compensation for safety behaviors in the workplace, both management and employees will benefit by management will have fewer accidents that can result in loss of cost and time, while workers can enjoy benefits from being safe alongside for them being out of harms way. In the effort of improving safety performance, rewards and recognitions can be an effective tool to encourage workers to continuously monitor and improve their safety performance (Ng, Cheng, & Skitmore, 2005).

2.4.3 Disciplinary Action

Disciplinary actions can be referred as the act of punishing a particular individual for non compliance behavior towards established set of rules and regulations. In an organization, workers sometimes ignore the importance of safety behaviors and act out of regulated requirements whereby such behaviors can lead to events of accidents. Therefore, in the effort to counter this kind of behavior, organization or management must take some kind of action to punish the violators to ensure that the same behavior does not happen again in the future. The enforcement of safety can be


described as management constantly punishes any personnel for non compliance of safety rules and regulations. (Probst & Estrada, 2010).

Punishments are important in order to avoid repetitive accidents from occurring in the workplace. Those who do not comply with the rules and regulations of safety must be given punishments so that they do not commit the same act twice. Ng et al (2010) stated that punishments such as financial fines where it requires the violators to be financially strained, in the future they will think twice before committing the same safety offence again. This then can lead towards a better safety performance further stated by Probst and Estrada (2010) where strict safety enforcement has shown influence towards safety outcomes and failure to do so were more likely to cause accidents and injuries in workplace.



Policy can be referred as legislation, laws, rules or regulations established by the organization for every individual in the organization to follow and abide. In terms of safety, legislation forms a framework in which health and safety is regulated and controlled (Teo, Ling, & Chong, 2005).

In the effort of managing safety, policy is one of the main elements. Safety Management System (SMS) implemented in Singapores construction industry highlighted 14 elements in safety management which include safety policy (Ling & Teo, 2006). Every personnel in an organization are obligated to abide by the safety rules and regulations established in order to avoid accidents occurrence in the workplace alongside improving safety performance.


Safety policy has positive relationship with safety performance whereby well defined safety policy encourages and enhances safety awareness, promote site safety practice and raise standards of safety in construction industry (Teo, Ling, & Chong, 2005). Furthermore, safety policy is also a way of how organization can express the prioritization of safety in workplace (Torner & Pousette, 2009).

2.5.1 High Standard of Safety

OSHA (2010) in part number 1910 titled Occupational Safety and Health Standard under subpart 1910.2 (f) defined standard as the standard which requires conditions, or the adoption or use of none or more practices, means, methods, operations, or processes, reasonably necessary or appropriate to provide safe or healthful employment and places of employment. Based on the stated definition by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) (2010) can be defined as the standard of conditions, or the adoption or use of none or more practices, means, methods, operations, or processes, to be in a safe condition before, during and also after execution.

In other words, safety standard can also be defined as the standard regulation regarding safety which every individual in a particular organization are obligated to follow and abide. Having a high standard of safety can simply be defined as the presence of high characteristic of safety requirements enforced to each and every individual across the organization. A study conducted by Torner and Pousette (2009) described the components and preconditions of high safety standard from the perspective of both experienced construction workers and first-line managers are consist of 4 main elements; Project characteristic and nature of work; Organization and structures; Collective values, norms and behaviors; Individual competence and attitudes.


Having high safety standard enforced in a particular project can result in a better safety performance or workers. Workers were obligated to follow a certain requirement established by organization that strictly point towards the importance of safety. Furthermore, management attitudes, formal conditions, collective values and individual attitudes which are the elements in a high safety standard will enforce workers to interact towards achieving better safety performance (Torner & Pousette, 2009).

2.5.2 Understanding and Implementation of Safety Management System (SMS)

Safety Management System (SMS) is a system established in the effort to manage safety in workplace within organization. SMS is considered as a formal safety system which every individual in organization are obligated to abide. In managing site safety, Ling and Teo (2006) stated that SMS must be introduced as a formal system and employees are expected to follow the rules and regulations of the system in order to ensure lower accidents rate. In other words, SMS is a system that highlighted the guidelines of behaving safely in working environment.

Every individual in the organization must be able to understand and able to implement every stated rules and regulations of SMS to achieve a high level of safety performance. Successful implementation of SMS refers to employees being able to understand and effectively implement the system in parallel with their nature of work. A study on ship-building and ship-repairing industry in Singapore showed a steady improvement in terms of safety performance with the implementation of SMS (Ling & Teo, 2006).

Managements commitment towards a better safety performance can be expressed through the implementation of SMS, but it must not stop there. SMS must be effectively communicated across the organization to ensure full understanding and utilization among workers.


2.5.3 OHSAS 18001 Certification

OHSAS 18000 is an international occupational health and safety management system specification which comprises of two parts; 18001 and 18002 and embraces a number of other publications (Vinodkumar & Bhasi, 2011). OHSAS 18001:1999 standard is an Occupation Health and Safety Assessment Series for health and safety management system whereby the implementation of this standard is to help organization to control risks related to occupational health and safety event (Vinodkumar & Bhasi, 2011).

Companies without OHSAS 18001 certification are much likely to be in the event of poor safety performance which indicated by the high rate of accidents and near misses in workplace among personnel. The OHSAS 18001 is the guideline that help management to determine risks that can occur in the organization and then enable them to come up with a risk response plan to either eliminate, accept, mitigate or transfer those risks before it occur. Other than that, the advantage of being able to determine the risks that can bring upon great impact towards the organization, management can effectively and efficiently avoid any uncertainty in terms of safety which then will decrease the rate of accidents in workplace and increase safety performance. Study conducted by Vinodkumar and Bhasi (2011) compared firms that have OHSAS 18001 certification with non certified firms and found out that certified firms have the advantage over other non-certified firms in terms of safety.



Personnel factors refer to behaviors of human in terms of safety within working environment. Any related issues concerning human aspects in workplace can be considered as personnel factors.


In this context, personnel factors are linked with safety which refers to human aspect in safety behavior that can influence safety performance. Teo et al (2005) defined personnel factors in construction site as the issues pertaining human aspects of the construction activity which pointed towards safety behavior of management and workers within organization.

The behavior and attitudes of management and workers within organization represents the organizations safety culture (Teo, Ling, & Chong, 2005). Teo et al (2005) further defined safety culture as a subset of organizational culture where beliefs and values refer specifically to the matters concerning safety and health thus making it dependant on the commitment of management and workers towards safety promotions and campaigns.

Framework developed by Teo et al (2005) suggested that personnel factors are consist of management attitude towards safety and Supervisors and workers attitude towards safety. These two elements are the elements that shape the safety culture of organization as mentioned earlier where safety culture is represented by behaviors and attitudes workers, supervisors and managements within organization.

2.6.1 Management Attitudes Towards Safety

Management attitudes and involvement with safety in workplace plays an important role in improving safety performance of personnel across the organization. Management have to show positive attitudes towards the implementation and accordance of safety rules and regulations established safety program. As parties that have the authority in an organization, most of the time workers look at management as an icon which they will tend to follow or establish exemplary behavior based on behavior of management itself, in this case towards safety performance.


Aksorn and Hadikusumo (2008) mentioned about management playing an important role in order to achieve efficient and effective safety management system and safety program throughout the organization. Safety performance is significantly related with management attitudes towards safety whereby accidents rate are affected by the way people behave towards safety itself, and management must show the appropriate behavior towards safety in order to decrease accidents rate in workplace. The establishment of certain or particular behavior then will become a culture which personnel take as their daily norm. These attitudes that come from management shows positive effect towards decreasing the accidents rate in workplace (Mearns, Whitaker, & Flin, 2003).

Study conducted by Ng, Cheng and Skitmore (2005) showed that management attitudes such as direct support and direct involvement in the organizations safety management system can directly influence safety performance whereby their study showed decrease rate of accidents in the event of management behave positively towards safety. Ng et al (2005) further stated that management commitment towards safety is an important factor contributing towards safety performance in organization level. A different study by Ling and Teo (2006) stated that in most of safety management application establish in the organization, management commitment or attitudes towards safety is a core element that shapes the effectiveness and efficiency of the safety management system itself.

2.6.2 Safety Culture

Following the incident in Chernobyl, the International Nuclear Safety Advisory Group introduced the term safety culture to denote management and organization factors that are important to safety (Sorensen, 2002).


Safety culture is the attitudes or behavior that became a routine or norm in workplace among personnel towards achieving safe working environment. Safety culture can be perceived as the way of behaving towards safety whereby indicates the guidelines or ways of working within the border of safety in the effort to avoid injuries and fatalities in the workplace.

Organizations mostly establish safety culture as a sub culture of the organization culture itself. In other words, safety culture is a sub culture in organization culture which highlights the way of behaving towards safety in the effort to minimize and avoid injuries and fatalities among personnel in the workplace. The term safety culture can be defined as shared corporate values that affect and influence members attitudes and behaviors whereby safety culture itself is a sub-facet of the organizational culture (Cooper, 2000).

Safety performance can be directly impacted by the existence of safety culture whereby the effect of safety culture will bring change in ways of how personnel behave and react towards safety event and conditions. Prioritization of safety in the behavior of personnel will strongly affect safety performance whereby the more safer the personnel behave, the more lower the rates of accidents will be. Cooper (2000) also stated that safety culture, as a sub-facet of organization culture is thought to affect members attitudes and behavior in relation to an organizations ongoing health and safety performance. Safety culture must be monitor in a constant time-to-time basis to ensure that each and every elements of the culture itself suits the environment of the workplace.

Applicability of safety culture and changes in safety culture will directly influence safety performance across the organizations. Sorensen (2002) stated that safety culture must be monitor with performance indicator to determine any required changes, this will directly related to the rate of safety performance as changes in safety culture will also cause changes in safety performances.


2.6.3 Training and Competency

Basic knowledge of safe behavior is not to engage in any unsafe act or behavior that can result in injuries and fatalities. Safety knowledge among workers is important to ensure that they do not engage such behavior that can significantly bring negative impact in terms of their safety. In addition, they must be given specific authority or permission to avoid any behavior, process or requirements that leads to accidents.

High safety knowledge can lead to a high competency worker which can be directly related with high safety performance in the organization. Competent workers will positively impact safety performance whereby competent workers are workers that receive safety training and given the ability to make decision on their own regarding any safety problems (Torner & Pousette, 2009).

Training is a way of making workers competent. In the effort of improving safety performance, giving appropriate amount of safety training to workers can greatly affect the rate of safety performance on workplace among personnel. This then can be referred as the effort to minimize numbers of accidents and near misses in workplace which brings to a better or higher safety performance (Tam, Zeng, & Deng, 2004).

The absence of safety training will increase numbers of accidents at the workplace which will result in a poor safety performance. Safety training is indeed an important tool in decreasing accidents and near misses rates and also considered as a key factor that affect the level of safety performance (Chan, Chan, & Choi, 2010).


2.6.4 Human Factors

Human factors can be described as environmental, organizational and job factors, human and individual characteristics which influence behavior at work in a way which can affect health and safety (Sgourou, Katsakiori, Goutsos, & Manatakis, 2010).

The focal point of human factors concerns is the performance of individuals. The term of human error is generally understood to mean an unsafe act by a system operator. The consequences of such an act may or may not be severe, depending on other circumstances. There are two errors that can be related with the term human error; active errors which usually associated with system operators such as airplanes pilots, air traffic controllers or power plant control room personnel; latent errors, which normally associated with personnel removed from operations such as designs, constructions, and maintenance personnel (Sorensen, 2002). The most common human factors causes were errors in judgment and the failure to follow safety rules and regulations (Hetherington, Flin, & Mearns, 2006).

Human errors are essential in the process of assessing the influence of human towards the possibilities of injuries and fatalities in the event of accidents occurrences. The assessment then will provide the understanding of what exactly the errors that were caused by personnel that triggers the accidents which then can be analyzed for future use in order to prevent repetition. Sorensen (2002) further stated that in the effort of understanding human contribution towards the effectiveness of a particular safety system, human errors must be assessed and modeled.




Technical factors can be defined as type of layout of work, equipment, degree of automation, design of work environment, maintenance and also safety related systems such as risk control systems, personal protective equipment and emergency control system (Sgourou, Katsakiori, Goutsos, & Manatakis, 2010).

Technical factors contribute towards safety performance in terms of any related technicalities involved in a particular task that can bring upon unsafe condition or unsafe behavior. The event of technicalities unsafe behavior can be in that of inappropriate machinery handling knowledge, inappropriate use of personal protective equipment and also failure of risk response and risk management system in organization.

Technical factors related to safety are mostly used to evaluate the effectiveness of management safety system in a particular organization as the main concept of technical factors in regard towards safety was to evaluate safety management on a more abstract level (Sgourou, Katsakiori, Goutsos, & Manatakis, 2010). Sgourou et al (2010) further stated that the fact that evaluation of safety management through the use of technical factors affecting safety in organization has been the main purpose of why this factors sometimes purposely omitted by management.

2.7.1 Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

Personal protective equipment is the equipment that is used to minimize impact of accidents towards personnel in workplace. Although the use of PPE is categorized as the last measure of responding towards risks, in a certain event where any measures cannot apply, the use of PPE will become the chosen alternative to at least decrease the


degree of impact towards personnel. OSHA (2003) defined PPE as the equipment worn to minimize exposure to a variety of hazards.

PPE is an essential requirement in construction industry as most tasks in construction involved personnel to directly engage with unsafe condition or event in workplace. In the construction industry, OSHA (2003) highlighted the regulations that cover requirement for the wear of PPE on the site:

29 CFR 1926.95 (criteria for personal protective equipment) 29 CFR 1926.96 (Occupational foot protection) 29 CFR 1926.100 (head protection) 29 CFR 1926.101 (Hearing protection) 29 CFR 1926.102 (Eye and face protection)

PPE showed a significant relation towards safety performance whereby the use of PPE can bring upon impact towards the level of safety performance at workplace. Even though the use of PPE will not guarantee the safety of personnel, but at the very least it is a preventive measure from far more serious impact. Research conducted by Olson et al (2009) stated that when hazard cannot be completely removed, priorities must be given towards the effort of encouraging technical competence and hazards awareness through appropriate prevention methods such as the use of personal protective equipment. Most common errors in personnel safety behavior that can lead to poor safety performance is the failure to comply with the rules and regulations regarding the requirement for the use of PPE on worksite alongside inappropriate wear of PPE (Olson, Grosshuesch, Schmidt, Gray, & Wipfli, 2009).


2.7.2 Project Characteristics and Nature of Work

Project characteristic and nature of work refers to the physical structure that being built, physical possibilities at the worksite for securing the work area related to the physical situation of the structure and the complexity of construction work (Torner & Pousette, 2009).

Torner and Pousette (2009) further described one of the preconditions of high safety standard is the characteristics of project and securing specific work area to the structure under construction as the limiting conditions which safety management must be adjusted by all parties involved.

In the presence of high safety standard to improve safety performance in construction site, the preconditions for establishment of the standard itself is influenced by the characteristics of project and the nature of work underhand. The measurement of project characteristic and nature of work can be done by referring to the physical structure, specific working area security and the complexity of work related in the project (Torner & Pousette, 2009)



Process factors can be defined as the way of doing a particular task in the effort to achieve objective, goals or producing final product. In construction industry, the term process is the behavior of engaging works related to a particular task. Process factors can be referred as the process of carrying out work by personnel. In regards to construction safety, Teo, Ling and Chong (2005) defined process factors as the process of carrying out works by construction personnel that may eventually be harmful to their well-being and safety.


Safety in construction site can be influenced by the way of how personnel carry their work in the effort of completing certain tasks. The main influencing element in process factors that can contribute towards accidents occurrences is control. Control is a way of defining what can and what cannot things in certain process of work. By controlling the way personnel carry their work, management can ensure that personnel do not engage in any unsafe behavior or event whereby such behavior can lead towards serious impact of personnels safety and well-being. Teo et al (2005) further stated that in process factor, major concern in managing work process is the effectiveness of control measure towards personnel due to the vast variation of activities consisted in a particular project.

Referring to the literature review provided by the study conducted by Teo et al (2005), it can be said that process factor is one of the elements that must be taken into consideration to assess the level of safety performance in an organization. This is contrary to the literature review whereby process factor is the process of carrying work which can bring upon harmful well-being and safety of construction personnel (Teo, Ling, & Chong, 2005).

The way of carrying work must be adequate and in-line with the organizations safety rules and regulations to avoid harmful events towards personnel at their workplace. Safe way of working will then decrease numbers of harmful events which contributes towards a higher level of safety performance. This shows that process factor have a significant relationship towards organizations safety performance especially on construction site where most work involved direct engagement by personnel.


2.8.1 Hazard Identification and Analysis

Hazard identification is the process to identify all the hazards that are related with a particular process, project or work environment. The main purpose of hazard identification is to highlight the critical processes of tasks, that pose significant risk to the health and safety of employees as well as highlighting hazards associated to certain equipment due to energy sources, working conditions, or activities performed (DOSH, 2008).

Construction industry often related with both safety and health hazards. Safety hazards can be defined as hazards that related with the cause of injury and can also cause damage in property which also result in financial loss in terms of asset. Health hazards are hazards that can affect the health of personnel which in other words can cause illness and can be in short or long-term effect. Department of Safety and Health (DOSH) (2008) stated that safety hazards are any force strong enough to cause injury and damaging property while health hazards are agents that can cause illness to an individual and at the same time may produce serious immediate (acute) effects or longterm (chronic) problems.

Referring to the definition given by DOSH (2008), it can be said that in order for management to avoid hazardous events concerning safety and health, proactive measure must be taken to identify all possible hazards in the workplace. Therefore, hazard identification is an important measure to identify all possible hazards in order to avoid any of it from occurring and giving negative impact towards the well-being of personnel. Furthermore, from identifying existing hazards in the workplace, management can come up with contingency and response plan towards any risk associated with the hazard. This will bring to the perception that hazard identification is an important element that can influence safety performance whereby the implementation of it can decrease numbers of possible risks and accidents in the future.


Hazard analysis is a method of how to analyze and determine the probability of occurrence, degree of impact and developing response and contingency plan towards possible risks determined in the hazard identification process. DOSH (2008) stated that risk is the determination of likelihood and severity of the credible accident or event sequences in order to determine magnitude and to prioritize identified hazards. According to the HIRARC process, analyzing risks can be done in three ways; qualitative, semi-quantitative and quantitative way of analysis. Qualitative and semiquantitative way of risk analysis can be done through the method of determining likelihood of occurrence and severity of impact. Likelihood of occurrence refers to the frequencies of occurrences from previous until current period and severity of impact refers to the analysis of severity from significant impact towards health, environment and property damage (DOSH, 2008).

Hazard identification and hazard analysis can be related to the effort of increasing organizations safety performance whereby hazard identification will help in determining significant risks that can occur in a particular process and the analysis can help to prioritize each risk. By prioritizing risks according to their severity of impact, management can greatly improve safety performance through proactive measure in accidents occurrence prevention.


Safety Performance

Safety performance is a measurement of safety in an organization. It measures how good an organization performs in terms of safety. The performance of personnel towards safety is shown by the way they behave towards established safety rules and regulations across the organization. Strict compliance of safety rules and regulations can characterize a particular organization as performing in terms of safety.


DeArmond et al (2011) conceptualized safety performance as supervisors observations of the incidence of engaging in trained safety behavior. Besides trained safety behavior, engagement in safety behavior can also come from the influence of safety culture of the organization which had become a norm across the organization among all personnel. DeArmond (2005) further stated that safety compliance as the required behavior which personnel are obligated to follow while safety participation refers to voluntary behaviors triggered by the personnel themselves without any force or influence coming from management or other sources.

There are many ways of how to measure safety performance. According to Ng et al (2005) safety performance can be measured in terms of accident rate, incident rate, experience modification rating and score card. Accident rate refers to the numbers of accidents occurrences in the organization. A good safety performance is described as having low numbers of accidents occurrences in the organization. By decreasing numbers of accidents, an organization can be considered as performing well in regards of safety.

Incident rate refers to number of lost time cases or lost time incident rate (Ng, Cheng, & Skitmore, 2005). Lost time rate is the numbers of days where work progress cannot continue due to accidents occurrences in the organization. Loss of time may be caused by fatalities, injuries or property damages. Besides numbers of days loss, loss of time also refers to number of fatalities and injuries in a particular event.

Experience modification rating refers to the organizations effort to compensate workers in regards of accidents occurrences. Financially, experience modification rating is the cost where organization incurred to pay workers compensation insurance (Ng, Cheng, & Skitmore, 2005).


Lastly is score card, based on literature review developed in a study conducted by Ng et al (2005) stated that score card system was introduced by Hong Kong Government consists of six key aspects; provision and maintenance of plant; provision and maintenance of working environment; provision of information, instruction and training; provision and implementation of safety systems of work; employment of safety officers and lastly site accidents record.



Management Activities Incentive Factors Policy Factors Personnel Factors Technical Factors Process Factors Safety Performance






Up until December 2009, there are 1091801 contractors registered under CIDB including foreign contractors (CIDB, 2010). From 1091801, 405308 construction personnel were active registrants where 357807 (88.3%) were locals and 47501 (11.7%) were foreign workers. Up until 31st December 2009, 4326 construction personnel with G7 grade were recorded and from those numbers 297 are G7 contractors located in Sabah region.



Based on Kotrlik et al (2001), most educational studies either use 0.05 or 0.01 alpha level in determining sample sizes whereby the use of 0.05 alpha level is appropriate for sample sizes above 120. The t-value for alpha level 0.05 is 1.96. Therefore for this study, alpha value of 0.05 which is 1.96 will be used.

For acceptable margin of error, this study will use 3% acceptable margin of error as suggested by Kotrlik et al (2001) which stated that 3% margin error is acceptable for use of educational research.


This study will use a 5-point scale and given that 4 standard deviations whereby 2 from each side of the mean would capture 98% of all responses and then develop estimated standard variation using formula as follows:

7 (number of points on the scale) S= --------------------------------------------6 (number of standard deviations)

Where S = 5/4

S = 1.25

After obtaining alpha, acceptable error and estimated standard deviation value, sample size will be determined using the formula as follows:

(t)2 * (s)2 n = ----------------(d)2


n = ((1.96)2*(1.25)2) / (5*0.03)2) n = 266.78


Because the calculated value is more than 5% from the population, correction formula should be used to calculate the final sample size (Kotrlik, Bartlett ii, & Higgins, 2001).

n n = -----------------------------(1 + n / Population)


n = 267 / (1+ (267/297))

n = 140.60

The final sample for this study is 141. Therefore, for this study, a minimum number of 140 respondents are needed.



This study will solely use survey questionnaire to collect data from respondents. Researcher will personally distribute the questionnaire to the respondents and also will personally collect the questionnaire back




To measure the agreement level of existence of particular variable or subvariables in this study, a five-point likert scale will be used in the development of questionnaire survey. The five-point likert scale is used to determine mean score for each variable which was adopted from (Chan, Chan, & Choi, 2010). The five point likert scale range from 1 represent strongly disagree, 2 represent disagree, 3 represent neutral, 4 represent agree and 5 represent strongly agree.

1 Strongly Disagree

2 Disagree

3 Neutral

4 Agree

5 Strongly



Data analysis will be done using the Statistical Package for Social Science Software (SPSS). The analysis will mainly use correlation and regression analysis to determine relationship and significant level of particular relationship of variable. Reliability analysis will also be conducted to obtain the Cronbachs alpha value for each variable in the questionnaire data collected to determine reliability. Correlation analysis also conducted to determine level of multicollinearity relationship existence among variables.




Title Development

Approval of Title

Development of Chapter 1

Development of Chapter 2

Development of Chapter 3

Final year Project 1 Submission


3.6.1 Title Development

In this phase, title were developed and discussed with supervisor. Several titles were suggested for approval. Every title was being considered in terms of feasibility and adequacy with the requirement within the field of Project Management.

3.6.2 Title Approval In this phase, title suggested and fulfill requirement were approved by supervisor.

3.6.3 Development of Chapter 1

In this phase, chapter 1 which is the introduction chapter for this study was developed. The chapter consists of the research background, problem statement, research objective, research question, scope of study, significance of study, hypotheses and expected results.

3.6.4 Development of Chapter 2

Chapter is the literature review related to the researchs variables. In this chapter, each and every variable in the study were reviewed in terms of literature. At the end of the chapter also included the research theoretical framework.


3.6.5 Development of Chapter 3

Chapter 3 is the research methodology where stated the population, sample, data collection method, data analysis method and data measurement.

3.6.6 Submission of Final Year Project 1

This phase is where final year project 1 is submitted to the supervisor.



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