Woolworths Limited

Summary

Woolworths Limited is an Australian success story. From a single shop in 1924 it has grown to become the largest retailer in Australia by both sales and market capitalisation and is also the largest food retailer in the country.

Woolworths Limited

Woolworths Limited

Overview

Woolworths Limited is an Australian success story. From a single shop in 1924 it has grown to become the largest retailer in Australia by both sales and market capitalisation and is also the largest food retailer in the country.

In a 2010 report by global accounting firm Deloitte, Woolworths Limited is listed as the 19th largest retailer in the world.

Across 17 trusted brands, the business employs more than 190,000 people in over 3000 outlets and boasts turnover in excess of $50 billion. The Sydney support office houses more than 3,000 staff alone.

To ensure all fixtures and equipment remain in good working order, Woolworths Limited employs almost 500 different businesses throughout Australia to undertake on site repair and maintenance work.

In 2008, Woolworths Limited asked Pegasus to provide contractor compliance services for all of its Australian retail sites to ensure its high expectations of contractor performance were met in all markets, especially in relation to adhering to strict safety protocols.

Woolworths Limited

Woolworths Limited

The Challenge

After several years of significant growth, the Engineering Maintenance Service Division (EMS – formerly known as the Assets Service Group) at Woolworths Limited was challenged with maintaining an ever growing, paper based contractor monitoring program across its significant portfolio of stores.

Different brands within the group had their own policies and procedures for hosting maintenance personnel in store and these also often varied by region and between states.

Larger contractors operating in multiple locations were also required to meet different criteria in different markets making it difficult to relocate specialist contractors. Acceptable behaviour at one location may not meet the desired standard at another.

Woolworths Limited realised a uniform procedure for managing contractors must be implemented across all retail operations within the group regardless of size, function or location. This process would cover the following functions:

  • Identifying and registering prospective contracting businesses - applicants submit copies of documents that cover legislative requirements such as public liability, workers compensation and professional indemnity.
  • Appraising applicants on the strength of a self assessment audit to ensure each business has the required level of qualifications and that supporting documentation is all up to date.
  • Facilitating a nationwide online induction program to convey the site safety requirements to every individual who intends to visit and work at any Woolworths Limited site.
  • Consulting with suppliers and contractors regarding any identified deficiencies that could prevent them from meeting the standards that have been set.
  • Establishment of an onsite training register to ensure all records are stored in a safe, secure place and are readily accessible to Woolworths Limited management.
Woolworths Limited

Woolworths Limited

The Solution

Pegasus was chosen to implement and drive this program over other national suppliers based on our ability to provide an efficient and reliable pre-qualification service. This service registers and audits all contracting companies that are engaged by Woolworths Limited and then inducts the contractor’s employees.

As part of this process Pegasus verified companies against Woolworths Limited’s vendor safety management process for over 500 companies Australia-wide in the first 12 months.  In 2014, more than 6,000 companies have now been through the process. This was completed through a robust process of firstly analysing the risk of each company, categorising them by risk and then creating a compliance work flow relevant to their activities, scope and frequency.  This usually meant the upload of insurances and licenses followed by a full desktop review of their safety management system.

We then converted content in the Woolworths Limited contractor handbook into an online induction program accessible via any internet connection 24/7, 365 days a year. Every approved contractor is required to undertake this induction. The induction module includes an exam and the results are completely visible to Woolworths Limited management. Questionnaire results allow them to identify any knowledge gaps or potential issues in the safety management process.

The training and qualifications register is administered by Pegasus’s industry leading contractor tracking software, Onsite Track Easy. Through this web-based program, Woolworths Limited management have access to all safety and training records of all contractors in real time.

Finally, contractors who successfully register and complete the induction are issued with a Pegasus Safety identification card that will identify them as an endorsed contractor to store management at any Woolworths Limited site in the country.

Woolworths Limited work with Pegasus to undertake a number of random audits each quarter. These comprehensive audits occur at the offices or workshops of contracting businesses and ensure these companies maintain the strict standards required to maintain their status as an approved contractor.

Woolworths Limited

Woolworths Limited

The Results

Starting firstly with the EMS Division at Woolworths Limited and now extending to the whole of Woolworths Limited, Pegasus has changed the face of contractor management in the retail sector.

The solution now extends to brands like Big W, Masters, Dan Murphy’s, BWS and ALH Group.  It has also shown the flexibility to deliver the same service to a wide variety of contractors as Woolworths not only operate Supermarkets, but also construct and manage their own facilities, operate liquor stores, hotels, vineyards, home improvement stores and manage their own distribution centres across Australia and New Zealand.

In an organisation the size of Woolworths the numbers often tell the story. More than 6,000 companies have now been pre-qualified through the robust company compliance services. Over 100,000 individual contractors now have a Woolworths Contractor Card with more than 250,000 individual online inductions completed since 2008.

The importance of onsite safety and effective contractor management has quickly permeated throughout the entire Woolworths Limited business and has bought a new level of efficiency and focus on safety to their business.

More than 2,000 store supervisors now carry the Onsite Track Easy App on their smartphones which scans the barcodes of contractors on arrival to firstly see that their company is pre-qualified and then shows that the individual is inducted and qualified to work on their site.  All distribution centres have Pegasus kiosks and tablets at their front gates delivering the same outcome.

It is clear to see that Pegasus has made a positive impact!