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What is Critical Control Management and why is it important?

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As a business in a high-risk industry, proactive Risk Management is a crucial element of overall workplace safety, business continuity and Major Unwanted Event mitigation.

Generally, organisations manage Risk in three ways; people, environment and business continuity. However, without the right processes, Risk and Hazard mitigation plans and management systems, lines are often blurred between what is considered a Standard Control and what is a Critical Control when mitigating a Risk.

As a result, organisations operating in high-risk industries are implementing Critical Control Management processes to minimise the likelihood of Major Unwanted Events (MUEs) and the associated, potentially catastrophic consequences.

While fatalities in the Australian/New Zealand workplace are declining from their peak of 2007 (see below), Critical Control Management is becoming a fundamental element to overall risk management, helping lead the change.

(Safe Work Australia)


What is Critical Control Management?

Critical Control Management is supported by Lucidity through a process commencing with the identification of a set of Master Critical Controls, which are then allocated as controls to individual Risks within Project Risk Registers.

Lucidity then provides a framework by which a Project and the business as a whole can confirm that each Critical Control has been correctly implemented, is effective and performing as intended, has not been circumvented and continues to be effective for the duration of the activity.

It is through this process that Lucidity provides organisations with the clarity and focus they need, helping to direct resources to the implementation and monitoring of Critical Controls, reducing the likelihood of Major Unwanted Events and avoiding the associated catastrophic consequences.


Why is Critical Control Management important?

According to the International Council of Mining and Materials (ICMM), “Investigations of MUEs, after the fact, typically show that controls for known risks were not effectively implemented. Often because of dense and complex safety management systems and hazard management plans or procedures with long risk registers that prove to be difficult to implement or lack clarity as to which controls are most important”.

Therefore, Critical Controls play a significant role in preventing MUEs by giving management, staff and contractors a clear line of sight on what Critical Controls need to be identified and addressed before a task/project/job can be performed.

Furthermore, implementing Critical Controls through a specialised HSEQ system like Lucidity helps create an understanding of what these controls need to do to prevent an undesired event.

With advancing technology, growing workforces and newly identified risks arising from emerging events like COVID-19, in every business environment, proactive Critical Risk Management has never been more important.


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