Why the Safety Culture Ladder

With the Safety Culture Ladder you measure how consciously (or unconsciously) your organisation deals with safety and health. In this way, you encourage everyone in your organisation to act more safely and consciously and thereby reduce the number of unsafe situations, resulting in fewer incidents (and therefore damage and absenteeism). This is done by making employees more safety-conscious, so that they themselves find it important to adjust their attitude and behaviour accordingly.

Compulsory in construction

The Safety Culture Ladder was originally developed by ProRail and has since grown into a broadly applicable instrument that organisations outside the railway domain can use to anchor safety and safety awareness in their way of working. The SCL's standards management is now in the hands of NEN and more and more parties, including major tenderers such as ProRail, TenneT and the Government Property Agency, use the Safety Ladder when selecting suppliers and subcontractors. From 2021 onwards, the Safety Culture Ladder will be included as an obligation in many tenders and contracts in the construction industry in The Netherlands. The signatories of the Governance Code for Safety in the Construction Industry (GCVB) have agreed to this. Due to the impact of the coronavirus, implementation dates for the Safety Culture Ladder have been postponed. For the most up to date information on changes in introduction dates, please visit the page about the changes in implementation dates.

How does the Safety Culture Ladder work?

Unlike audits for system certificates, the Safety Culture Ladder is not about assessing documents, but uses interviews and observations to determine which of the five steps of the Safety Ladder an organisation is located on.  Initially, the SCL was there in one variant, the Safety Culture Ladder Certificate. This required a full (100%) audit to be carried out each year. After a pilot with derived variants at Tennet, there are now four different SCL products. It has also been agreed within the Governance Code for Safety in the Construction Industry to use these products.

Which SCL-certificate suits you?

In the overview below you will find a complete overview of the available SCL products. The range varies from the SCL Original (where the full audit takes place each year) to variants with a smaller sample or just a self-assessment with a check on the action plan. Kiwa can certify all these products and help you choose a particular SCL variant. Please contact us if you would like to know more about this!

SCL VERIFICATIONYear 1Year 2Year 3
SCL Original (Certificate)100% audit100% audit100% audit
SCL (Certificate)100% auditFollow-up audit 40%Follow-up audit 40%
SCL Light (Statement with step indication)40% auditCheck on action planCheck on action plan
Approved Self AssessmentSelf-AssessmentCheck on action planCheck on action plan

Safety Culture Ladder training courses

Kiwa has developed two training courses to help you or your employees set up or implement the Safety Culture Ladder. At this moment the training courses are only available in Dutch. If you have interest in the training courses in your own language, please contact us via training@kiwa.nl to see what we can do for your organization:

  • E-learning Safety Culture Ladder (Dutch): Would you like to know more about the requirements of the safety culture ladder? Then follow this e-learning, a unique online basic training for employees involved in the safety culture in your organisation and anyone who wants to know more about the Safety Ladder.
  • The Safety Ladder in practice (Dutch): After this training you can determine on which step your organisation stands and what is needed to keep it and / or go to the next step. The training offers practical handles and enables the employee to do something with this and go home with a concrete action plan.

Why SCL certification at Kiwa?

Kiwa has been closely involved from the start in auditing, setting up and improving the Safety Culture Ladder. As a member of the Committee of Experts of scheme manager NEN, Kiwa is still involved in the further improvement of this. Kiwa consequently has a great deal of experience in implementing and testing the Safety Culture Ladder. Our SCL clients include small and large organisations at home and abroad. Kiwa has been authorised by NEN to certify (internationally) according to the Safety Culture Ladder. Would you like more information?

Please contact us using the contact information on this page. You can find the website of the Safety Culture Ladder via Safetycultureladder.com.