Safety recognition for Martin Engineering

Martin technicians are fully trained in the best practices to avoid accidents.
Martin technicians are fully trained in the best practices to avoid accidents.

Martin Engineering has been awarded the RAVS Plus recognition by ISNetworld (ISN), one of the largest global safety compliance groups. By receiving the commendation, Martin Engineering has solidified its reputation as a pioneer in modern industrial safety, not just with its products, but also its training seminars, reference books and service procedures. The result is a culture of safety that the organisation can practice and teach to customers, fostering a work environment with fewer risks and injuries.

ISN helps 75 000 contractors and suppliers manage risk and support sustainability, evaluating company safety cultures by collecting and reviewing insurance and other risk management documentation, such as supplier certificates, workers’ compensation and financial information. The organisation assigns and tracks completion of contractor and supplier employee-level trainings and qualifications required to perform specified tasks to meet client and regulatory requirements, benchmarking contractor performance against industry peers with reporting tools, dashboards and data analytics.

The RAVS Plus recognition demonstrates to Martin Engineering customers that the organisation has undergone a higher level of scrutiny. This internationally recognised designation illustrates to clients and employees that safety is an ingrained part of the company’s culture. As onsite contractors providing consultation, installing equipment or making service calls, customers have the peace of mind that Martin technicians are fully trained and knowledgeable in the best practices to avoid accidents.

“The entire RAVS Plus process was definitely a team effort,” says Janice Verbeke, global director of People and Culture for Martin Engineering. “Everyone involved rallied to make this accomplishment happen. But the foundation of safety had already been established here long before I arrived.”

With the dedication of a safety-focused internal team comprised of Verbeke, Sue Griffith and Niki Andris, the intensive ISN audit that was conducted as part of the recommendation resulted in zero deficiencies and only a short list of opportunities for improvement. This is also due in no small part to the training and knowledge of the field technicians chosen to take part in the audit.

COVID-19 restrictions changed how the traditional in-person audit was conducted. With the help of Andris, five experienced Martin technicians were coordinated. They were chosen from among the wide variety of industries Martin Engineering serves, from cement production to mining, to take a detailed ISN survey. The survey tested their knowledge of everything from certifications to equipment to ensure all policies, procedures and training were communicated and properly working as designed.

While the surveys were being conducted, several months of research was being prepared for the organisation’s audit interview. Conducted via teleconference, Verbeke and Griffith sat for two hours with an ISN auditor. The audit consisted of a deep dive into safety policies, procedures, compliance and training at the corporate level.

“Sue and I complemented each other well, with our different knowledge bases,” Verbeke says of the audit. “The questions ranged from overall safety knowledge on OSHA regulations to specific topics of what we do in the field. She provided information on our practices, protocols and equipment used in the field. I provided the safety and regulatory knowledge, training protocols and corporate administrative processes.”

From Martin Engineering’s inception more than 75 years ago, when Edwin F. Peterson invented the company’s first industrial flow aid device, the Vibrolator Industrial Vibrator, to protect workers from the consequences of manually hammering clogged hoppers, safety has been a top priority for the organisation.

Since then, Martin Engineering has introduced its Foundations series of textbooks, training the next generation of industrial vocations on safe bulk material handling and conveyor operation. This learning series includes Foundations for Conveyor Safety, which is widely considered the most comprehensive safety-focused book of its kind in the bulk handling industry.

“The most positive outcome of the ISN recognition is the sense of gratification that we, as an organisation, were willing to put ourselves up to scrutiny and demonstrated that safety is our culture, it’s not just talk,” Verbeke concludes. “It’s a deep belief system that we practice every day.”

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