Inyatsi Construction Group Holdings has achieved a remarkable milestone by being the first construction company in Africa to obtain SACAS 45001 and 14001 ISO Certifications.
The ISO 45001:2018 certificate means Inyatsi has been assessed and found to satisfy the requirements of the Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems certification while the ISO 14001:2015 certificate is for Environmental Management Systems. Both certificates are in respect of quality and safe civil engineering and concrete construction and associated work standards.
The company was officially presented with its certification by the South African and Audit Services company on Friday May 10, 2019 at the Inyatsi Construction Boardroom during a media briefing session.
SACAS is an assessment provider for all types of management systems and their processes as well as product, process and service certification provider. It provides complete, reliable and high-quality auditing and certification services in respect of various standards.
Speaking at the presentation Deon Du Toit, Managing Director of SACAS commended Inyatsi for this achievement.
“This is the first ISO 45001 certification we hand out in Eswatini and the third in Africa. However in Africa it is the first for a construction company because the other two from us were for consultancy and manufacturing. So this is quite an achievement. Such certification is very important because it shows that the company adheres to safety and quality standards,” he said.
He said occupational health and safety was something that was very important for every organization. “It is not just a system we establish and implement in an organization to manage health and safety but it is also to conform with legislative requirements. It also looks into the overall strategic goals that you have looked at as an organization for yourselves from a business perspective,” he said.
He noted that achieving this was not easy but through collaborated effort and dedication to the cause Inyatsi did so within the 18 months of assessment.
The Inyatsi Group Chief Executive Officer John Hamilton gave credit to the teams that have been working hard to ensure that the systems are implemented in order to get the accreditation.
“It means that we can give our clients comfort that they are dealing with a company that is stable and has quality systems that are not only recognized worldwide but are also audited by independent parties. We have good safety records,” he said.
To employees he said this means Inyatsi is providing a safe environment for them to work in and that is one of the main reasons they started the process in the first place.
“From a quality point of view what it means is that the employees can take pride in that they are producing world-class products. Also because we are providing a good quality product it gives us a competitive edge and that means there is more sustainability. This translates to job security to the employees,” he said.
Du Toit also noted that in terms of figures Inyatsi had very low incident rate of 0.1 per year meaning injuries at work were less than 1 per year in the organisation. He said because of this Inyatsi is performing quite well as sometimes in other organisations the rate may be much higher per year.
“Inyatsi is highly rated in terms of the low incident frequency rates. A fatal incident costs a company in the region of E10m to E15m not to even talk about lost time because of the incident. Your customer at the end of the day wishes to deal with an organization that has this kind of control measures in place and that is where the benefits come from,” he said.
He said therefore work done by such certified companies means they do it within the set time limits without delays due to any injuries and that was what they aimed for.
Since being established in 1982 Inyatsi has always prioritized safety. Currently Inyatsi Group Holdings (PTY) LTD has 30 sites running in four different countries. Its achievements include that in 2014 Inyatsi Group Holdings engaged into the NOSA 5 star integrated management system and achieved a 4 star rating in 2015 where they as a group maintained the 4 stars until 2017.
In 2018 Inyatsi Group Holdings changed service providers from NOSA 5 star integrated management system to ISO 14001 and ISO45001 where we were audited and recommended for the certification that has since been presented.
In brief ISO certification certifies that a management system, manufacturing process, service, or documentation procedure has all the requirements for standardization and quality assurance. ISO standards are in place to ensure consistency. Each certification has separate standards and criteria and is classified numerically.
Inyatsi Construction safety employees have welcomed and applauded the company for putting their safety first through implementing these standards.
Amanda Dludlu said thanked the company for the system and noted that it would help them greatly in their daily duties. Mduduzi Mdluli said, “This system makes our lives easier and helps us to work within a safe environment.”
Louis Van Zyl, Inyatsi Group SHEQ Manager thanked his team for their contribution to the attaining of the standards.
“My team has put in a lot of work and effort into this. At the end of the day they have learnt a lot from this system and it makes their job easier to have guidelines and a checklist that helps reduce incidents. That means we get more opportunity for work,” he said.
He said what was important now was to implement and maintain the system as it has been placed in order to ensure continued sustainability and success.
The safety department working hand in hand with site management and site personal said they continue to strive to minimize incidents and accidents to achieve 0% incident tolerance through constant safety awareness, safety talks, safety meetings, daily risk assessments job observations daily safety officer checklists, inspections and internal as well as external audits.