Being competitive has its advantages

Case Study: Sam Braithwaite - Harsco


Sam Braithwaite can be competitive. He enjoys being active and admits that whenever he sees anyone else out for a run he can’t help but think “I’ll have him by the third lamp post” and he begins to step up the pace.

Sam also understands that in the world of work it can sometimes be very important to keep up with or move ahead of the game, particularly when you work for a subcontractor in the construction industry.

For example, his employers Harsco were keen to win contracts connected with the Olympics in Britain in 2012. In Sam’s words, they would not have even been looked at if they hadn’t ticked all the right boxes right from the outset.

“We’re always being asked to provide data to our partners and principal contractors on how we’re performing in the areas I’m responsible for, that’s safety, health, environmental and quality,” he told us. “You simply have to demonstrate competence now to win business.”

Sam is a SHEQ (Safety, Health, Environmental and Quality) Manager for Harsco Infrastructure in the UK. The company provides scaffolding, access, formwork and design, shoring and site safety services for all kinds of construction work. Sam ensures standards are maintained both within depots and on site.

A former Royal Engineer in the British Army, Sam has many years of experience both in construction and doing things safely. He gained various military qualifications, including in health and safety, work diver and supervisor and training, before he retired from service in 2002. He and his family wanted to settle centrally (North Derbyshire) and found work on the back of his experience and his NEBOSH General Certificate in Occupational Health and Safety, which he had passed before leaving the Army.

After only a few changes of employer, Sam who is now 51, began working for SGB in 2005. The company owner Harsco, rebranded SGB into Harsco Infrastructure Services UK in 2009. He thoroughly enjoys his multi disciple role.

As well as seeing the benefits his now Chartered Membership of IOSH (CMIOSH) has brought him in terms of knowledge, Sam also recognises the advantages gained by his employers, particularly for providing assurance about safety to those they do work for.

As environmental management began to take on greater significance in the construction industry, and with Sam taking on additional responsibilities, he decided to add the NEBOSH Environmental Certificate to his list of qualifications. He passed last year. His timing was excellent, coming ahead of the Olympics. It helped Harsco renew its Certification to ISO 14001, with Sam playing a big part in the Implementation and the reviewing their Environmental Management System (EMS).

In addition, the qualification entitled Sam to sign-up for Technical Membership of CIWEM (The Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management), providing another string to both his and his employer’s bow. All these things add up when it comes to demonstrating high standards and securing contracts.

Keep on winning Sam.

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