First of all, your peo­ple need to feel they’re safe

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Rear View -

WHETHER it’s an as­sign­ment at one of the world’s great sport­ing events or a sole post­ing in a re­mote lo­ca­tion, em­ployee se­cu­rity is be­com­ing an in­creas­ingly press­ing is­sue for or­gan­i­sa­tions that want to re­cruit and re­tain qual­ity staff.

In a tight­en­ing job mar­ket, com­pa­nies re­cruit­ing peo­ple to work over­seas need to of­fer more than just an at­trac­tive salary pack­age - th­ese peo­ple need to be looked af­ter in ev­ery re­spect, in­clud­ing pre­vent­ing them from com­ing into harm’s way and re­spond­ing ef­fec­tively in the event they are af­fected by an in­ci­dent or ac­ci­dent.

In a nutshell, this means meet­ing the duty of care to your over­seas em­ploy­ees.

DDW is both an acro­nym for ‘‘ don’t die won­der­ing’’ and the name of Aus­tralia’s pre­mier se­cu­rity pro­vi­sion firm, but not in the sense of a uni­formed guard and a few CCTV cam­eras.

DDW staff have a di­verse range of se­cu­rity, ma­jor event and trans­port re­lated op­er­a­tional con­tin­gency and strate­gic se­cu­rity plan­ning skills. They have as­sisted in four Olympic Games, have high- level pol­icy ex­pe­ri­ence in both the pub­lic and private sec­tors and boast mil­i­tary ex­pe­ri­ence in both con­ven­tional and spe­cial op­er­a­tions.

Com­pany con­sul­tants have worked ex­ten­sively in the US, Europe and Asia in the se­cu­rity and op­er­a­tions fields which has equipped them with a unique set of ex­pe­ri­ences, skills and knowl­edge.

DDW man­ag­ing di­rec­tor, Richard Hol­gate, has ex­ten­sive mil­i­tary and cor­po­rate ex­pe­ri­ence and has worked on some of the world’s largest events, but his fo­cus is just as firmly fixed on rel­a­tively mi­nor as­sign­ments that can have enor­mous con­se­quences for all in­volved if some­thing goes wrong.

An ex­am­ple of what can go wrong if a duty of care frame­work is not in place can be clearly shown by re­cent events in Queens­land: The Aus­tralian re­vealed that a nurse work­ing in a re­mote com­mu­nity was al­legedly raped af­ter lit­tle had been done by the nurse’s em­ployer to pre­vent the in­ci­dent ( such as re­plac­ing bro­ken locks on doors) or pro­vide ad­e­quate re­sponse when the in­ci­dent ac­tu­ally oc­curred ( the nurse was told to ‘‘ put it be­hind her’’ and just re­turn to work the same morn­ing).

‘‘ That was ba­si­cally a demon­stra­tion of how to do ev­ery­thing wrong in that sit­u­a­tion,’’ Mr Hol­gate says.

‘‘ The ex­ten­sive me­dia cov­er­age not only high­lighted that that an em­ployee had been let down badly by her em­ployer but that it will take some time for the or­gan­i­sa­tion to re­build its rep­u­ta­tion and to re­cruit qual­ity staff in the near fu­ture.’’

He de­scribes duty of care ‘‘ as the re­spon­si­bil­ity to en­sure ev­ery­thing rea­son­ably prac­ti­ca­ble is done to pro­tect the se­cu­rity and safety of over­seas em­ploy­ees’’ with the em­pha­sis on rea­son­able as costs for meet­ing duty of care obli­ga­tions need to be kept to a min­i­mum.

‘‘ In fact, th­ese mea­sures are not that ex­pen­sive as the em­pha­sis is on com­mu­ni­ca­tion and in­for­ma­tion flows,’’ Mr Hol­gate adds.

In essence, meet­ing duty of care is a mat­ter of pre­vent­ing in­ci­dents where pos­si­ble and re­spond­ing ef­fec­tively when pre­ven­tion is not pos­si­ble.

The achieve­ment of your over­seas busi­ness ob­jec­tives are very much de­ter­mined by the qual­ity of the peo­ple you have in key po­si­tions off­shore, and at­tract­ing - and re­tain­ing - th­ese qual­ity peo­ple is a chal­lenge for most or­gan­i­sa­tions.

Demon­strat­ing that your or­gan­i­sa­tion is se­ri­ous about duty of care sends a strong mes­sage to both prospec­tive em­ploy­ees and clients.

DDW is an or­gan­i­sa­tion with ex­ten­sive ex­pe­ri­ence in de­liv­er­ing ser­vices to en­able or­gan­i­sa­tions to meet duty of care for em­ploy­ees en­gaged over­seas and en­sur­ing or­gan­i­sa­tions are pre­pared for ad­ver­sity.

Th­ese ser­vices in­clude se­cu­rity, in­for­ma­tion tech­nol­ogy and com­mu­ni­ca­tions, Busi­ness Con­ti­nu­ity Plan­ning ( BCP) and risk man­age­ment ser­vices which DDW has de­liv­ered to both gov­ern­ment and cor­po­rate clients.

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