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New summit to provide first-hand perspectives on COR certification

Angela Gismondi
New summit to provide first-hand perspectives on COR certification

ECompliance will be hosting the first-ever COR Summit created by a safety management system company, with CEO Adrian Bartha describing it as an opportunity to share experiences, learn from others and improve safety programs.

“It’s less of an information session on why to achieve COR, it’s more of a session on the how to get there,” he explained. “It’s really getting a first-hand perspective straight from the horse’s mouth of the companies that are successful with COR. It’s never easy for companies to achieve this but we just want to help them learn from each other and help avoid any mistakes or hardships experienced by other companies. We really want that boots on the ground perspective on how to actually get this done.”

Certificate of Recognition (COR) certification is a health and safety audit tool and training program that has been established for 20 years in Alberta. It has gained traction within the past decade in Ontario and certification is granted by the Infrastructure Health and Safety Association.

“COR is just about doing safety better and then by virtue of that, being able to show it and prove it gives you the COR certificate,” Bartha said.

ECompliance, a software company that works to improve workforce participation in safety, is supportive of COR for two reasons.

“It’s a great way of operationalizing safety, not just safety being in a binder or a policy, it’s really about getting it done on the front lines and getting it done in a way you can prove to your clients. COR is also a great competitive advantage,” he noted. “We’ve seen in Western Canada, the companies that embrace COR early on see it as a way of showing that they are excellent at how they operate. Those are the companies that grew the fastest. In Ontario we see that playing out in textbook fashion.”

The one-day summit, which will be held May 30 in Toronto, is geared to small and large businesses and the people in them who are looking to achieve, maintain and utilize COR to its full potential.

“At a high level we are trying to help drive a deeper awareness of how to not only achieve COR but just make it part of how these companies operate day-to-day and make it something that they sustain on a long-term basis,” explained Bartha.

The summit will feature a variety of speakers including Toronto Maple Leafs alumnus Doug Gilmour as the keynote speaker who will discuss the importance of leadership, embracing change in the workforce and employee buy-in. Discussions will include obstacles faced and lessons to make the most of COR; Give A S*** About COR; and Technology and Achieving COR.

“We have a number of directors or VPs of health, safety and environment that are going through some key topics especially on change management with COR,” said Bartha. “There are more construction companies that are enrolled to achieve COR than have achieved COR and I think that’s because it’s hard to plan out that whole process. That’s where a lot of people get stuck and we want to help them with that.”

The day will also feature a panel discussion on real-life experiences and lessons learned through COR featuring Stewart Day, safety manager with AMICO; Matt James, health and safety director with Spark Power Corp.; and Lee-Anne Lyon-Bartley, health and safety director with Dexterra.

“We want to share that wisdom and expertise with the community because usually there is a lot of questions that people have…or they are more interested in knowing how does a company actually roll this out, which is something you can only really hear from folks inside the company that are doing this successfully,” he said.

The summit is geared to two different camps.

“One is they are looking to achieve COR and they are looking to see around the corner a little bit in terms of what that looks like, how to get there,” said Bartha. “Then there is a camp of companies that have achieved COR and they are looking for ways to make it easier to maintain and make it part of their daily or weekly life. They want to share tips from other companies that are operationalizing it really well.”

Bartha said the company is a big believer in COR because it does reduce injuries but also gives companies a chance to bid on bigger contracts.

“We do want to give them a competitive edge to be able to access all those contracts from York Region, TTC, Infrastructure Ontario, City of Toronto, Metrolinx,” he said, because they require COR certification.

Recent Comments (1 comments)

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Carlos Image Carlos

Although I agree with COR in theory, I believe it creates a level of unfairness to those companies who do not have the resources to allocate to such an evasive certification. Furthermore, I find it ludicrous that prime contractors or clients are requesting and only accepting bids from COR certified companies when they themselves are not COR Certified!!
How does that make any sense.?
Also, why is it that only one organization has the exclusive certification rights, IHSA??
COR makes your company accountable, yes. Does it make it safer? No! All it does is show that the company has a HSMS & staff is able to answer auditor questions.
The auditor reports on what was seen and in place at the time of audit, along with field interviews. Why is IHSA the only organization in Ontario recognized to provide this service? Like I said, I agree with the theory and the concept behind it, I just do not like the discriminatory affect it has on smaller companies.


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