Health and safety
- Major reduction in number and severity of lost-time injuries (LTIs): LTIs reduced from 31 in FY2017 to 19 and days lost due to injuries from 599 (full year) to 472, of which a single injury contributed 180 days
- PPC's lost-time injury frequency rate (LTIFR) dropped from 0,37 in FY2017 to 0,25
- 16 of our 23 sites recorded a zero LTIFR
- Eight sites have worked over 1 million hours without an LTI
- Nine sites or business units have worked over three years without an LTI
- International holdings had only two LTIs in the last 12 months for a world-class LTIFR of 0,08
- Roll out of proprietary snakes and hazards programme progressing well, with solid commitment from leadership
- Implementation of centralised group safety, health, environment, risk and quality (SHERQ) software system well advanced
- Very onerous and developing requirements for rail safety in South Africa which are not commensurate with PPC's rail risk profile
PPC safety and health policy
(revised January 2018)
PPC is committed to protecting the occupational health and safety of employees, contractors and visitors in the workplace and, where appropriate, other stakeholders. The PPC group demonstrates this commitment through its occupational health and safety management system that is entrenched in all organisational activities and conforms to recognised occupational and railway health and safety standards, and legal frameworks.
PPC will establish clear accountability for leading occupational health and safety standards in the company and although legal compliance is the foundation of the PPC health and safety management system, it will also monitor emerging issues, technological innovations and stakeholder interests to ensure effective and sustainable solutions to health and safety challenges. Accordingly, the health and safety policy will be reviewed and revised periodically.
To achieve best-in-class occupational health and safety performance, PPC is committed to:
- Building, through engagement and empowerment, a proactive, high-reliability health and safety culture at individual, leadership and organisational levels
- Providing the necessary resources and implementing formal systems and structures to ensure an effective health and safety management system for the group to achieve related objectives
- Maintaining a specialised health and safety function for an informed view of associated risks from business activities
- Continuously identifying and controlling occupational health and safety risks to eliminate or minimise related hazards in the workplace and, where appropriate, neighbouring communities
- Establishing meaningful metrics to monitor our health and safety performance, and using these to set goals for continual improvement
- Reporting and investigating health and safety incidents and actively sharing best practices and learnings
- Educating, training and developing employees and other stakeholders, where appropriate, to ensure each person is able to act in a way conducive to health and safety
- Maintaining open and transparent relations with all our stakeholders on occupational health and safety matters
- Actively involving employee representatives in managing health and safety
It is the responsibility of PPC's leaders to ensure this policy is understood, effectively communicated and implemented throughout the group. All employees are responsible for understanding the impacts of this policy on their day-to-day work practices and are expected to apply and support these principles.
PPC prides itself on excellent safety systems and has made considerable progress in recent years. We are therefore pleased to report a considerably improved safety performance for the review period. In the previous financial period (2017), we regrettably recorded a fatality at 3Q Rustenburg, while we had zero fatalities in 2018 in our consolidated subsidiaries. LTIs improved markedly, from 31 in the prior period to 19 in 2018.
Scope of safety data
We use management control as the guiding principle to determine whether safety statistics are reported in PPC group figures or separately:
- Where PPC has a majority share in the business, it completes a financial consolidation and therefore has effective management control. Safety statistics are included in group data
- Where PPC does not consolidate the financials (ie does not have a majority shareholding) or have effective management control, statistics are reported separately
Under this definition:
- Safika (91%), Pronto and 3Q Mahuma (100%) health and safety statistics are included
- Habesha (38%) is excluded and reported separately from PPC group statistics
At Habesha (Ethiopia), four employees were working inside the bin of a clay screw conveyor when it was switched on and one unfortunately succumbed to his injuries. His co-workers' injuries were classified as LTIs. Our deepest condolences go to the family of the deceased, his colleagues and his friends.
PPC affirms its commitment to the safety and health of all its team members and other stakeholders. These incidents (fatalities and LTIs) strengthen our resolve to continuously improve our safety performance. As with all other significant incidents, full investigations are conducted and corrective steps and learnings are implemented throughout the group. Interventions at Habesha to improve its safety culture continue.
PPC group safety statistics
For comparison, all statistics below are based on a rolling 12 months.
- 2013 to 2015: previous financial years, ie October to September
- 2016: 1 October 2015 to 31 March 2016
- 2017: 1 April 2016 to 31 March 2017
- 2018: 12-month group actual: 1 April 2017 to 31 March 2018, ie current reporting period – figures not audited
|FFR(1) per 200 000 hours worked||0||0||0||0,01||0,05||0,02||0|
|Number of LTIs||None set||19||11(5)||31(3)||10||20||18|
|LTIFR per 200 000 hours worked (12-month window)||0,24||0,25||0,21(4)||0,37||0,24||0,24||0,24|
|Days lost to LTIs||None set||472||354(6)||599||239||511||804|
|Significant administrative notices(2) (number)||None set||2||–||4||3||6||4|
|(1)||Fatality frequency rate.|
|(2)||Section 54 (Department of Mineral Resources – South Africa only).|
|(3)||Thirty-two incidents resulted in 31 LTIs and one fatality.|
|(4)||LTIFR = 0,21 for South Africa, Botswana and Zimbabwe (excluding Safika, Pronto and 3Q).|
|(5)||The number of LTIs assured by Deloitte for South Africa (excluding Safika, Pronto and 3Q), Botswana and Zimbabwe is 11.|
|(6)||The number of days lost assured by Deloitte for South Africa, Botswana and Zimbabwe is 354 (excluding Pronto, Safika and 3Q).|
Pleasingly, the group LTIFR has returned to its stable trend line after the disappointing spike in 2017. Both the number and severity of incidents declined at PPC-controlled sites for an LTIFR of 0,25 at year-end from 0,37 in the prior period.
PPC uses a structured incident-analysis tool for all significant incidents. Root causes are comprehensively assessed across people, the environment, equipment/tools/material, procedures/standards and organisational factors. Action plans and lessons are shared to eliminate similar incidents group-wide.
Group statistics by region/operation
|Operational LTIs and fatalities||18||28||8||14||16|
|Project LTIs and fatalities||1||4||4||4||3|
|PPC employees involved||14||18||7||10||14|
|PPC contractors involved||5||14||5||8||5|
|SA operations' LTIs and fatality||17||27||6||11||15|
|International holdings' LTIs||2||5||6||7||4|
|Established sites(2) LTIs||10||14||5||n/a(4)||n/a|
|New sites(3) LTIs and fatality||9||18||7||n/a||n/a|
|(1)||One fatality and 11 LTIs.|
|(2)||Established sites include: Dwaalboom, De Hoek, Jupiter, Hercules and Beestekraal, Slurry, Riebeeck, Port Elizabeth, Mount Steward, Grassridge, Lime Acres, Saldanha, Montague Gardens, Sales and Marketing, Sandton, Group Laboratory Operations, Aggregates SA (Mooiplaas and Laezonia), George, Colleen Bawn, Bulawayo, Aggregates Botswana and Botswana depot.|
|(3)||New sites include: Slurry SK9 project, Pronto, 3Q Mahuma, Safika, Harare factory (Zimbabwe), CIMERWA (Rwanda), DRC factory (DRC) and Project Habesha (Ethiopia).|
|(4)||Meaningful comparisons with previous and current years not possible.|
|(5)||One fatality and 31 LTIs.|
Direct comparisons for different reporting periods and comparing new sites with established sites do not necessarily represent developing trends. We are concerned about the number of LTIs at our subsidiary sites, which is being addressed in our snakes and hazards programme (part of PPC Alive) to improve hazard identification, safety reporting and communication.
|Number of visits||28||34||13||28||48|
|Section 54 (SA – work stoppage)||2||4||3||4||2|
|Section 55 (SA – notice to rectify)||9||7||0||16||2|
In the review period, PPC had 28 visits by authorities. The significant administrative notices (DMR – section 54) served on the Aggregates Laezonia quarry were lifted within 48 hours after appropriate representation was made to the principal inspector.
There were zero notices from the Department of Labour on health and safety issues.
General safety matters
- PPC is active in Chamber of Mines structures to obtain information and add value on complying with various elements of the mining charter. The related scorecard for all South African mining sites was completed and submitted to regional DMR offices in March 2017. No scorecard was submitted for the review period as the new charter has not been finalised
- All PPC's South African manufacturing sites remain certified under the OHSAS 18001 standard. A new ISO standard for health and safety (ISO 45001) was published in March 2018 and will ultimately replace OHSAS 18001. As a group, we will need to decide whether to switch to ISO 45001 and, if so, we will have three years to complete the transition
- PPC has 13 rail sidings at 11 sites (SA only) that must comply with rail safety regulations. New draft regulations (determination of safety management system and reporting, and rail safety bill) are likely to be promulgated in the near future. PPC was selected as one of 10 companies to pilot these new regulations and was required to apply for our 2018 Rail Permit under these draft regulations. PPC has acquired the services of a consultant to assist in our 2018 rail permit application. PPC submitted our rail permit application as per requirements on 30 November 2017 and the final permit was issued by end March 2018
All contractors and employees undergo health and safety induction before starting work. In addition to entry, annual and exit medical examinations for all PPC employees and contractors, we complete extensive pre-deployment health evaluations for expatriate workers (including all employees and contractors travelling for international assignments). These include medical assessments, fitness to work and/or travel, individual travel health assessments, vaccination requirements and malaria prophylaxis.
All applicable health and medical reporting requirements of the departments of mineral resources or labour have been met. In addition, under the mining charter scorecard, PPC reports on HIV/Aids and tuberculosis programmes run by clinics at group operations. Reported prevalence is low in South African operations for both diseases, with fewer than 60 and 30 confirmed cases respectively across all sites. No cases of silicosis were reported in the period, maintaining the 10-year trend, and incidence remains extremely low in PPC. Robust recording standards for these conditions are still being implemented in certain operations outside South Africa.
PPC conducts occupational hygiene surveys (lighting, noise, dust, ergonomics, heat, vibration and ventilation) at all established operations. Where issues are identified, these are rectified with advice from occupational hygiene and medical personnel. Occupational hygiene surveys will be introduced at new operations and subsidiaries, as required, based on the relevant occupational health risk assessment.
In 2016, we implemented a malaria-control programme at our DRC project site. We are also working with the government of Rwanda (CIMERWA factory) to control malaria through initiatives such as malaria awareness induction, insect repellent, issuing malaria test kits, extensive malaria vector spraying, providing mosquito and window nets at contractor construction, employee accommodation sites, and adjacent villages. We are pleased to report that the significant reduction in malaria prevalence in these areas is being maintained, with both the DRC operation and CIMERWA each reporting fewer than 200 malaria cases in the reporting period.
PPC's strategy to grow its business entails expanding existing operations; constructing, commissioning (both greenfield and brownfield) projects, operating new sites and diversifying into a number of other materials and services businesses. The safety and health risk profile of each of these initiatives differs vastly and, although PPC is guided by its overall health and safety policy, implementation methods and processes need to consider in-country dynamics.
At present, projects in Rwanda, the DRC and Zimbabwe have completed construction and operations have ramped up production. Slurry's SK9 project was commissioned in April 2018. The challenges of building and maintaining robust safety and health systems are significant and we recognise that we need to strengthen the base in our established and new (subsidiary) operations.
Why we do it
PPC passionately cares for the health and safety of its people across all operations. We are sincere about making a difference to ensure all our people get home healthy and safe each day. As such, we are striving to create a culture of zero harm (beyond zero) and become more resilient.
How we do it
- Leadership commitment through mindful engagements on health and safety at all levels in the group
- Investing in people by ensuring we have the right people with the right training and education. This includes resources dedicated to managing health and safety across all operations and people who are fit for purpose
- Investing in health and safety systems to proactively manage issues to become more resilient
- Ensuring physical environment such as infrastructure, equipment, structures and tools are fit for purpose and properly maintained
- Legal compliance to all in-country health and safety legislation
What we do
Our established health and safety systems include risk assessments, thorough incident investigations based on the serious incident analysis technique, regular inspections, observations and audits (internal and external as well as legal compliance audits) and reporting.
We appreciate that our operations are constantly changing and we need to adapt, Based on our proactive approach, we have identified a number of initiatives for 2019 and beyond:
Senior executives recognise the critical role of leaders in safety management. Key members of the executive and other senior leaders will undergo mindful leadership coaching to properly lead our snakes and hazards process discussed in this report.
People engagement and empowerment
A year ago, we introduced a safety initiative, snakes and hazards, to improve performance. This simple risk assessment uses the characteristics of three snakes to identify hazards in the workplace: puff adder (hidden hazards), python (developing hazards) and cobra (obvious hazards). The power of this programme lies in the universal knowledge that snakes are dangerous. Using these snakes to identify and then characterise hazards has proved an excellent foundation for proper discussion and communication (engagement) on hazards and appropriate actions. Including short videos of prior LTIs becomes a practical training opportunity in hazard identification and controls required to prevent the hazard from materialising, ie risk reduction. The programme has been rolled out at most sites in South Africa, Rwanda and Botswana. Zimbabwe is planned for early in the new financial year.
In the near term, snakes and hazards will be further embedded with follow-up reviews and coaching. Focus areas will include the importance of safety communication during Invocoms - safety discussions must be specific and relate directly to people, work activities, work areas, associated hazards and, very importantly, the risk-reduction measure required to ensure no one is hurt. Supervisory personnel have a critical role in leading and facilitating these discussions. Accordingly, front-line leaders will be trained to correctly coach and lead this programme.
Safety, health, environment, risk and quality (SHERQ) systems improvement – Isometrix
Understanding that existing platforms no longer adequately met our requirements as a SHERQ management tool, we acquired a new software tool to integrate these systems. The project to roll out new SHERQ software (Isometrix) is well under way, with functional design specifications largely completed and signed off by subject-matter experts. Initial user acceptance testing has also been completed and the team is now preparing for final testing. Once completed, key users will be trained, with an expected "go live" date of first quarter 2019. The new software will assist with:
- Integrating SHERQ systems
- Health and safety reporting – supported by transparent information, and appropriate real-time access to that information
- Efficiency of systems such as inspections, observations, risk assessment, investigations, audits and incident reporting
- Sharing health and safety learning points
- Tracking and closing out health and safety actions (corrective and preventive)
We have appointed a group SHERQ systems specialist to assist sites in ensuring Isometrix is properly rolled out across PPC.
To accommodate our changed operational and licence requirements, we are in the final stages of implementing a new document management system, which will also align with the new SHERQ tool discussed above. This will also meet the requirement for a fully functioning document management system in terms of certification to ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and OHSAS 18001.
Engaging new subsidiaries
Given the poor safety performance of our new subsidiaries (Pronto, Safika and 3Q), safety initiatives are being strengthened, specifically through the snakes and hazards programme.
Commitment for current operations
For established PPC operations, our identified focus areas for safety improvement include:
- Safety culture surveys
- Behaviour benchmarking
- Complete snakes and hazards roll out and embed through site reviews and coaching
- Training front-line personnel to lead health and safety in their operations from the first quarter of 2019
- Focus on incident analyses to identify root causes and sharing learning points through the so-what incident-review process
Engaging international operations
Our new operations in the DRC and Rwanda require additional support. For the DRC, the comprehensive operational readiness plan includes health and safety training as a critical issue. Extensive training at worker and supervisor level contributed to the solid safety performance during commissioning.
CIMERWA also requires additional support for health and safety. Focused action plans for managing health and safety include the snakes and hazards programme as well as training for supervisory personnel. The snakes and hazards programme started in March 2018 with site planning visits and adapting material for use in Rwanda.
Reinforcing project safety
By working with our partners, project safety performance has improved from an LTIFR of 0,73 in the previous year to 0,37 in the review period. We will continue to engage with contractors to establish, implement and maintain appropriate health and safety programmes. We also use lessons from previous projects and findings from incident investigations to guide improvement in these programmes. Specific attention is paid to:
- Training – all contractors complete site-specific induction in their mother tongue before being allowed on site. Job-specific training through accredited third-party companies (rigging/slinging, work at heights, scaffold erectors, trackless mobile machinery operators, etc) and individual competency cards issued to people with specific training
- Safety structure – appointing project safety teams comprising chief plus three safety officers. As the main contractors for our current large projects are Chinese, a fourth safety officer who speaks Mandarin has been appointed to the SK9 project site management team. Chinese translators are available to assist with communication, training and document translation
- Safety inspections – daily site safety visits and inspections and third-party inspection of all lifting equipment and tackle to ensure legal compliance
- Risk assessments – continuously reviewing contractor risk assessments and method statements for high-risk activities
- Investment in employee development at 2,5% of the wage bill – over 4% in South African operations
- Learning and development initiatives above 90 hours per employee benchmark in most parts of PPC
- Third BBBEE transaction BEE III launched in March 2018
- Good performance against transformation targets
- Leadership competencies revised
- Group values reviewed
- Higher staff turnover from designated groups
- Wage disputes resulted in minor strike action
- Staff complement reduced in DRC due to poor market conditions and low cement demand
Following leadership changes and corporate action in the review period (and in recent years) PPC has reviewed its strategic priorities. The resulting key initiatives support our business strategies and ensure stability, sustainability and growth, with human capital priorities focused on:
- Human resources solutions (an integrated combination of electronic tools and processes)
- High-performing organisation
- Organisation culture
Our initiatives and performance areas for the review period are summarised below. Most of these performance areas support our strategic priorities.
This report provides a total company view, including Pronto and the new milling plant in Harare. There was a slight decrease in total workforce to 3 538* in 2018. The marginal reduction in the South African workforce reflects the moratorium on recruitment during the head office restructuring process.
Total workforce as at 31 March 2018
|South Africa||2 048*||2 069|
|Subsidiaries (Pronto, 3Q, Safika)||510||506|
|3 538||3 580|
We maintained a well-balanced workforce, with young talent (under 35) representing some 33% of the total, while more stable and seasoned employees accounted for 44%. The risk of losing intellectual capital and institutional experience was well managed, with 23% of our employees aged 50 and above.
In the main, the company continued to demonstrate progress on transformation targets compared to industry norms in South Africa. Female representation is at 24,8% against 45,2% in the national economically active population (EAP), and our initiatives to close the gap through recruitment and promotion helped balance leavers with new appointments. The young talent category has the highest percentage of people from designated groups (African, coloured and Indian) and female employees. We have also made progress in diversifying our talent pipeline: analysing new appointments in South Africa shows 88% are African, coloured or Indian, 92% comply with employment equity targets and 38% are female.
National EAP versus PPC
In South Africa, the proportion of designated groups in senior management has increased by 1,4%.
Our group turnover rate rose to almost 10%*, partly due to restructuring our DRC operations. The review of our head office structure resulted in 15 voluntary resignations. The purpose of voluntary exits was to give employees an incentivised choice and limit possible disputes.
While we have made progress in transforming our workforce demographics, the turnover rate in designated groups is disappointingly high. To prevent avoidable turnover, team engagement sessions are under way to develop a compelling employee value proposition.
PPC's absenteeism rate is 2%, comparing well to the average industry benchmark of 3%.
Union membership is unchanged at 36% of the total workforce, with National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) still having the highest membership.
PPC supports freedom of association and prohibits unfair discrimination. Relevant agreements between the company and various unions are in place and well maintained. The employee relations climate is sound and no significant industrial incidents or major disputes were recorded during the reporting period.
Wage negotiations at most plants were concluded during the year without disruptions, and each plant settled within affordable levels. Slurry and IDM Meyerton recorded wage-related strikes of two days and one day respectively.
Developing our people
Given the widespread shortage of key skills in our industry, we understand the need to develop a skills transfer plan for critical positions and scarce skills, particularly for roles currently occupied by people over age 50. Equally, focused initiatives are critical to retain young talent and talent with scarce skills and in critical roles. We have adopted an integrated talent management philosophy with supportive practices to ensure effective delivery of talent and skills throughout the organisation.
The challenge lies in balancing the group's needs for specialist skills with compliance to national and sectoral HR targets. This is an industry-wide challenge.
Talent and culture
Leadership skills (competencies) were defined and communicated across the business to ensure clear understanding and alignment to our strategic priorities. We also revised our performance management process as part of promoting a high-performance culture. Group values were reviewed and rolled out in South Africa, and will be extended across the group by August 2018.
We made progress on developing a leadership assessment tool, which will be finalised and implemented in 2018. These assessments will help identify development gaps and the actions required to close these gaps. We believe this development plan will also support our succession planning, which was launched early in the year and add value in terms of identifying suitable candidates for the senior leadership pipeline.
We believe the process of cultural revitalisation and implementing improved HR systems will entrench the characteristics of a high-performing organisation. Equally, the development and launch of a compelling employee value proposition (EVP) will support our ability to attract and retain talent.
As the scale of the group has changed markedly in recent years, we are reviewing the alignment between our policies and practices to ensure discipline, fair application and fair treatment of all employees. This process will continue in the new financial year.
We are also enhancing engagement levels between PPC's leadership and our employees to improve understanding of business initiatives, eliminate misinterpretation of information, build trusting relationships and drive performance. In addition, better engagement will ensure the benefits of a diverse and inclusive workforce are truly appreciated.
Learning and development
Training hours per employment category: South Africa (excluding subsidiaries)
|Professional||2 551||235||11||1 656||195||8|
|Skilled workers||32 201||661||49||37 070||1 032||37|
|Semi-skilled||25 990||1 023||25||27 477||749||39|
|Learners||130 295||78||1 670||157 274||68||2 313|
|Total||195 056||2 048||95||223 541||2 069||108|
Training hours per country: international
|Zimbabwe||9 626||412||23||35 360||428||83|
|Rwanda||18 287||258||71||19 288||248||78|
|Botswana||3 146||131||24||2 547||138||18|
|DRC||2 054||145||14||6 795||191||36|
Training hours by race and gender: South Africa
|Training hours for year||African||Coloured||Indian||White||Total||African||Coloured||Indian||White||Total||Grand total|
|2016||20 124||2 403||59||526||23 112||45 772||26 541||77||5 577||77 967||101 079|
|2017||35 226||10 742||155||3 117||49 239||108 141||49 889||142||16 130||174 302||223 541|
|2018||40 813||7 918||51||3 044||51 826||81 421||49 026||55||12 728||143 230||195 056|
Training expenditure as a percentage of wage bills
|South Africa (ZAR)*||1 104 666 407||43 981 435||4,0||4,8|
|Zimbabwe (US$)||10 205 311||154 694||1,5||1,2|
|Botswana (Pula)||30 784 200||570 921||1,9||1,1|
|Rwanda (Rwandan franc)||4 117 266 237||79 832 956||1,9||3,1|
|DRC (US$)||5 049 920||30 318||0,6||5,6|
Learning and development initiatives measured as hours per employee are above 90-hour benchmark targets across most parts of PPC. Our investment in learning and development across the group is a significant 2,5% of the wage bill, with South African operations recording over 4%. Of our total learning and development expenditure, 44% was directed at the young talent pool of 178 learner employees. Initiatives included under this category are illustrated below. As such, we were able to maintain our level 5 rating on the skills development element of the dti's BBBEE codes under challenging financial conditions.
The growth and development of talent is one of our human capital strategic priorities. A healthy pipeline of young talent into the organisation will ensure effective implementation of talent plans to meet short and long-term business requirements.
The comparative numbers of learners participating in our young talent development initiatives are shown below:
The implementation of an integrated learning solution and management system will support talent development and self-learning, while containing costs and enhancing reporting. This project is scheduled to begin in the new reporting period and will be phased over two years to cover all PPC operations.
2018 and beyond
Our long-term people strategy (summarised below) is supported by strategic priorities that will be implemented in the next 12 to 18 months: