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World Day for Safety and Health at Work


Ian Beresford

World Day for Safety and Health at Work is an annual campaign promoting a positive health and safety culture in workplaces globally. The theme for this year is participation and social dialogue in creating a positive safety and health culture. In support, we are highlighting the ways in which we can all contribute.


Situational awareness

From a safety perspective, Situational Awareness is simply being aware of what is happening around us in terms of where we are, where we are supposed to be, and whether anyone or anything around us poses a risk to your health and safety. This awareness helps us to make the right choices or take the right action to keep ourselves and others around us safe. Within QinetiQ, we’ve shared practical tips with our people on how they can remain aware of their situation enabling us to consider how we might act or work differently to avoid accidents or incidents.

Calling a Safety Stop

At QinetiQ, we expect our people to always work safely and in a way that safeguards the environment. If we ever feel that our safety is being compromised, we encourage our people to call a SAFETY STOP. A Safety Stop is where an unsafe condition or unsafe act is spotted immediately prior to or during the work activity and someone chooses to intervene on safety grounds. Anyone can call a Safety Stop, and we frequently encourage our people to understand and be aware of the principles that underpin our approach to managing Safety Stops.

Keep up-to-date

Our Environment, Health & Safety (EHS) team provide regular safety updates using our internal Safety News site. We encourage our people to use this site as one of the ways they can keep up to date with regular news feed updates around safety.

Report Incidents and Near Misses to aid prevention

Accidents, incidents and near misses are reported using our internal Incident Management and Reporting tool. This tool initiates investigations at local levels, enables effective learning from experience and is critical to helping us prevent re-occurrences and managing hazards.  

Speak Up

There are a number of ways for our people to seek advice or raise a concern, including how to seek advice; who to contact in the first instance; other groups within the business they can talk to, such as our Ethics Champions who are a point of contact for advice as well as guidance on our ethical decision-making tools; and the option to raise a concern confidentially using an externally provided confidential reporting system. Whatever route is chosen, and wherever our people are located around the world, we are committed to listening.

Take care of our wellbeing

Ensuring our wellbeing is a priority, we encourage our people to:

  • Avoid working in circumstances where we are fatigued or feel stressed, especially when carrying out a safety-critical task
  • Take regular breaks and getting support from your manager to ensure breaks are part of your schedule
  • Support each other by checking-in: if a workmate doesn’t seem to be themselves, we encourage them to take some time out and stop what they are doing to remain safe

We can all experience periods when, because of a change in circumstance or life challenge, we might not be able to bring 100% of ourselves to work. Being open and talking about how we are feeling can lead to getting the help and support we might need. We encourage our people to use the multiple channels available to provide help, these include speaking to their manager, our mental health first aiders and also using the counselling services provided by our Employee Assistance programmes.

Building a culture of prevention through social dialogue contributes to a safe and health working environment. Together, we can and are making a difference, and we continue to explore the variety of ways in which we can thrive and achieve our potential through practical guidance, emotional support and like-minded communities.