We often get phone calls from industry clients weighing their options – they have a project coming up on their schedule, and they need to choose if they should hire standby or train in-house to meet their needs.
Should they train a few of their personnel to a technician level, kit them out with rescue gear, and meet their own safety needs in-house?
Or should they bring in a trained, equipped and insured rescue team to provide standby services while their own personnel focus on the work at hand?
There are four factors we consider with clients when weighing these options. Explore these thought-starters to help you choose if you should hire standby, or train in-house.
Long term goals of the company. Does their company want its personnel to be able to do more of this work in the future? As the rope access industry has demonstrated, there’s a demand for workers who have a trade and technical rescue/access expertise.
For example, we recently provided confined space rescue technician training to an industrial pressure washing company so that they can permanently expand their operational range
Turnover rate of personnel. New hires means more time spent on managing and training an in-house team. The administrative load of managing an in-house rescue team (even when turnover is low) comes at a significant cost – our client’s company shouldn’t underestimate the documentation time required to properly demonstrate your due diligence.
Add in the need for regularly scheduled and documented practices to ensure retention of the skills learned during the original certification course, and the company may soon find itself needing to hire more administrative personnel.
Duration of project. If the client’s company is engaging in a short-term construction project, they’ll likely choose a standby team.
This is exactly what one engineering firm did when performing stream sampling for a prime contractor doing work on a bridge in Edmonton. For their week of work, we provided the rescue standby and site access services the engineering firm needed in order to provide their employees with a safe work environment.
But the longer the client’s company is out there, the more complex their options become. Perhaps they’re involved with a construction project that is projected to last years in duration. Or, perhaps construction is over, but shutdowns are planned to happen with a relatively high frequency. In these cases, they’ll want to weigh their possibilities carefully.
Available time and funding. Sometimes the funding and time available doesn’t make it feasible to train an in-house rescue team immediately. Technical rescue certification courses are (intentionally) not short courses.
Is there a budget available for the certification courses themselves, and for the possible overtime clocked by personnel attending the course?
Time To Decide: Hiring Standby, Or Train-House?
Before a client chooses between hiring standby or training in-house, take some time with these thought-starters. There’s no one-size-fits-all solution that can substitute this kind of evaluation.
Want a hand walking through this evaluation process? Contact us to walk through this evaluation – free of charge – with our Safety Services Coordinator.