Roles in HSE work

Everyone is required to contribute to creating a good working environment, but responsibilities differ according to the role played in the enterprise.

Employee’s duties: Employees not only have the right to participate in decisions which affect the working environment and safety, but also a duty to comply with the safety instructions and routines established for their workplace. An employee must contribute to implementing HSE measures and participate in organised safety work.

Employer’s duties: The employer is responsible for ensuring that the working environment is fully acceptable and accords with the WEA, while
also having the right to manage. That makes them primarily responsible for
the working environment, and they must involve employees in the process in order to fulfil their responsibility.

AMU: Comprising management and employee representatives, this body is charged with working for a fully acceptable working environment in the enterprise. It participates in planning safety and environmental work, and keeps a close eye on developments in these areas. Its duties are prescribed by the WEA and the regulations on organisation, management and employee participation.

Safety delegates: Elected by the workforce, these officials work to protect their interests in issues relating to HSE. They must see to it that work is
done in a way which protects employee safety, health and welfare.

Union officials: They must support their members on general working conditions as well as in individual cases, and serve as a link between management and workforce.

Company health service: This provides a specialist advisory resource for preventive HSE work. It has a free and independent role in assessing the working environment, and supports both employer and employees in following this up.

Inter-party collaboration: Statutory collaboration between employer and employees.

Tripartite collaboration: Covering employers, employees and government, this has a long tradition in Norwegian industrial relations. Where the petroleum sector is concerned, it specifically means a constructive collaboration between these parties on improvements – including for safety and the working environment. Several tripartite bodies have been established for the industry, with the Regulatory and Safety Fora as two of the most important.

Checklist for improvement

The PSA has produced a checklist for use by employers and employees
in implementing and following up provisions for employee participation.

  1. Does the company have governing documents which show how systematic provision is made for employee participation in HSE work
    (section 3-1, WEA)?
  2. Which routines does your enterprise have to ensure sufficiently early involvement of the safety delegates and the AMU in cases with significance for HSE (section 13, framework regulations)?
    - Is it clear which issues the safety delegates and the AMU will be involved in?
    - Are regular meetings held between management and safety delegates?
  3. How has your enterprise ensured that safety delegates, management and AMU members have the knowledge required to handle HSE risk in their safety area (section 13, framework regulations, section 6-5, WEA, and sections 3-18 to 3-20, regulations on organisation, management and employee participation)?
    - Is a training programme available soon after election as a safety delegate/AMU member?
    - Do safety delegates/managers/AMU members have updated and relevant training in the regulations and risks for their workplace?
    - Is the type and content of 40-hour courses assessed?
    - Other expertise-building?
  4. How does your enterprise ensure that safety delegates and AMU members have the time required to carry out their duties (section 13,
    framework regulations, section 6-5, WEA)?
    - Is time allocated for involvement in plans and activities?
    - Is enough time allocated for preparing and executing safety delegate work?
    - Is time made available for this work?
  5. What routines does your enterprise have for following up compliance with the regulations and your own governing documents on making provision for employee participation (section 21, management regulations)?
    - When did your enterprise last conduct a review of this?