CDM Consultancy – Ensuring Safety and Best Practice
CDM stands for Construction Design and Management and it refers to the regulations which were introduced in 1994, adding new disciplines into the building procurement process. The CDM regulations are designed to improve the overall management and co-ordination of safety, health and welfare – throughout all of the stages of each construction project. This reduces the number of fatal accidents and serious injuries in the workplace – an alarming amount of which happen every year.
The CDM regulations put an emphasis on management and planning, rather than paperwork, which is a more effective way to ensure a safe project is being carried out. The regulations state the duties held by those who can contribute and improve the health and safety of the project. Designers and contractors with a more authoritative role are given more responsibility.
Taking Reasonable Steps
The CDM Regulations state that employers must take reasonable steps to ensure that the work is being carried out safely. This includes making sure that welfare arrangements have been put in place before the work is started. Also, it includes guaranteeing that any structure used in the workplace meets the standards of the regulations.
Employers must allow for sufficient time and resources to achieve these duties, as well as indicating how much time is available to prepare to the designers and contractors.
Who Does the CDM Apply To?
The 2007 CDM Regulations apply to most workplaces in the civil engineering, building and construction work sector. This includes any fitting out, alteration, conversion, alteration, renovation, upkeep, redecoration, construction or other maintenance. It also includes the demolition or dismantling of a structure.
In addition to this, the regulations also apply to the preparation for an intended structure, including site clearance, investigation, exploration and excavation. If you will be assembling prefabricated elements in order to firm a structure, or installing or maintain any elements of the structure such as hydraulic, electrical, mechanical, compressed air, gas, telecommunications or computer – the regulations will also apply.
However, the CDM doesn’t apply to the assembly of impermanent structures such as marquees and tents, or the general maintenance of a fixed plant (unless this is being done as part of construction work or it includes substantial alteration of the structure). Also, the regulations will not apply to general horticultural work such as tree planting, work on vessels such as ships or the manufacture of construction elements such as roof trusses, bathroom pods or other pre-fabricated components.
Do the CDM regulations apply to your business? If they do, you should consider hiring a consultant who can help guide you through and make sure that you are complying correctly. They will be able to get to know the particular needs of your business and offer you advice that is suited to your situation, so that you can manage your workplace in the safest and most effective way.
The Value of a CDM Consultancy
In order to ensure that your company is following the CDM regulations, it is very valuable to hire the services of a CDM consultancy. These consultants are experts on the regulations and they will be able to help your company find effective solutions for complying.
To find out whether your company is compliant, a consultancy can carry out a CDM audit – which will give an objective third party view of the strengths and weaknesses of your company. After making the audit, the consultancy will be able to offer you a detailed report, which will outline the changes that are needed.
A CDM Consultancy will be able to work alongside the client project owners, or independently, offering expert advice. They will offer advice and guidance on a number of aspects, including feasibility, design, engineering and much more.
What else does a CDM consultant do? Here are some of the important tasks:
- Analysing what information needs to be made available pre-construction and putting it together in an easy to understand format.
- Working with the design team and co-ordinating via health and safety meeting sessions.
- Watching out for health and safety issues that might come up during the process and advising on the best way to solve these problems.
- Working with the principal contractor and making sure that their plan is effective – offering advice and guidance if necessary.
- Answering any questions that the client might have about the process or the regulations themselves.
These are just a few of the responsibilities that the CDM consultant has, but this is by no means the extent of what they have to offer. Depending on the workplace and the particular situation, there might be other tasks and responsibilities that the consultant will become involved in.
The Benefits of Complying
Complying with the regulations of the CDM has a number of advantages, including:
- You will save money when you comply, as you will reduce your delays and sick days.
- You will reduce the amount of accidents that take place in your workplace, which also helps you to avoid bad publicity.
- You will avoid potential issues with repair, maintenance and cleaning.
- You can rest assured knowing that your business meets the legal requirements, so that you will not face fines.
- You will show your employees that you value their safety and respect their well-being, which is very good for their morale.
- You will avoid compensation claims from workers who have been injured on the job due to negligent health and safety practices.
The best way to make sure that you comply with the CDM regulations is to hire the services of a CDM Consultancy. They are professionals who are experts on the regulations and will be able to advise you on the best practices. They will get to know your business and understand your particular needs, so that they can offer solutions that suit you best.
By working with a CDM consultancy, you don’t have to wonder whether or not your business is complying with the regulations. You can follow the expert advice of your consultant, so that you will be able to operate safely and efficiently.