Safety Culture Ladder (SCL)

Work safely thanks to optimised behaviour-oriented occupational health and safety

Transmission system operators are increasingly demanding their contractors to provide optimized behavior-oriented occupational safety in order to ensure a high level of occupational safety. This is where the Safety Culture Ladder (SCL) system comes in: The company's safety culture is improved through increased awareness of safety-relevant aspects and meaningful action. The focus is on the question of what contribution everyone can make to preventing incidents at work.

As a partner of transmission system operators, with SCL you benefit from...

  • a demonstration of continuous improvement of the safety culture
  • improved opportunities in tenders for contract awards
  • a good image, as you demonstrate an interest in the well-being of your employees
  • helpful tips and advice from expert auditors with many years of experience in auditing occupational health and safety management systems

The levels of Safety Culture Ladder

The safety behaviour of SCL is divided into five levels:

Stage 1 - Pathologic
"We have no breakdowns and we deliver good quality. So why waste time on prevention?"
The company invests little to nothing in improving occupational safety behaviour. This attitude is undesirable and cannot be certified.

Stage 2 – Reactive
Employees tend to feel a victim of a situation and not personally responsible. Change behaviour is often spontaneous and short-term.
The entity makes changes only when errors occur. This behaviour is only rated as moderately positive.

Stage 3 – Calculative
The company has defined relevant safety regulations for itself - but the approach is not consistently pursued. When responsibility is assumed, it is often motivated by self-interest.
Commitment to safety and compliance with laws and regulations is primarily the responsibility of (senior) management: there is an awareness of occupational health and safety and this is rated positively.

Stage 4 – Proactive
Safety has a high priority and is integrated into the company's operational processes. There is continuous investment in raising health and safety awareness and employees are encouraged to speak to each other about dangerous behaviour.
Improvements are structurally implemented and evaluated. This approach is characterised by proactivity and initiative. Occupational health and safety awareness is the responsibility of each individual: "What contribution can I make?" This behaviour is rated very positively.

Level 5 – Innovative
The issue of occupational safety is firmly anchored in business processes and an integral part of reflections and evaluations within the company and with other sector parties. All employees orient their thinking and behaviour towards safety-relevant aspects: Occupational safety is an essential part of their work.
This behaviour is rated as very good.

  1. As soon as GUTcert has been awarded the contract, the certification process begins with your self-assessment based on the SCL levels mentioned: "Where do we see ourselves?". A template can be found on the Safety Culture page.
  2. GUTcert evaluates the data of your self-assessment. Together with GUTcert, you determine the details of date, procedure and scope of the SCL audit on site (business premises and ongoing construction sites).
  3. During the on-site visit, the auditor evaluates the implementation of the safety culture for the level you have assessed through interviews and observations. The main findings are explained at the end of the audit and further measures agreed if necessary. A detailed written report with a recommendation for further action concludes the audit.
  4. Within three weeks after the on-site inspection, GUTcert will inform you of the certificatation decision made on the basis of the audit report. If all the necessary requirements are met, you will receive a certificate valid for three years. Upon receipt of the certificate, you will be listed in the online list of SCL-certified companies.
  5. After one year, the certificate is renewed with a recertification audit, in which the safety culture is again comprehensively examined.

GUTcert is authorized by a cooperation agreement with NEN (Dutch Standards Institute and scheme owner of SCL) to certify its customers according to SCL.

We look forward to hearing from you and will be happy to make you an offer.

If you have any questions about the System Safety Culture Ladder, please contact Dr. Martin Ponick, +49 30 2332021 - 34. Alternatively, please contact Mr. Seán Oppermann, +49 30 2332021 - 87.