Rock Solid Start Program | Rockford Construction

Rock Solid Start Program

Rockford Construction is launching a new safety initiative called “Rock Solid Start” at all new projects with a goal of increasing jobsite safety through a simple, multi-step approach.

The new program, which is being deployed company-wide after several successful pilot implementations at test sites, focuses on enhanced communication and physical warmups to begin the day’s work on all our construction projects.

The Rock Solid Start program brings all Rockford team members and trade contractor partners together to kick off the workday. Several minutes are spent communicating the planned tasks for the day for each trade contractor, which helps to identify potential safety risks and worksite overlaps. This helps trade contractors not only optimize their work for the day but minimize risk of safety hazards due to overlapping work. Site-specific safety messages are relayed to all trade contractors, increasing awareness of any high-hazard activity taking place on the site.

These quick, efficient meetings also serve as a chance to remind contractors of safety protocols and raise awareness of safety expectations on the jobsite. The regular communication of safety risks and increased awareness of what is happening on a site reduces the risk of injury and safety incidents.

“Simple reminders and discussing the work of the day helps our people onsite be more aware of potential risk factors and helps reduce incidents and injuries,” said Paul Rozich, Rockford’s director of safety and risk management. “In a business where keeping people safe is essential to a good outcome, these conversations are helping people stay out of harm’s way.”

Another aspect of the Rock Solid Start program is called Stretch and Flex, which involves a period of physical stretching and flexibility that is intended to help contractors warm up for their day, reducing the risk of sprains, strains, tears and other movement-based injuries.

“Construction is a physically demanding career, and this program helps our valued trade contractor partners as well as our Rockford team properly prepare for their workday,” Rozich said. “If we can mitigate risk for our partners and our clients, we are winning as a team.”

Rozich said most athletes warm up before they perform on the playing field, and said the same principles apply on jobsites, increasing flexibility and mobility for team members engaged in strenuous physical movements throughout the day. Specific stretches of the back, neck, shoulders and more are designed to help with jobs that often bend, pull, lift and twist throughout the day.

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“I personally feel the benefits immediately and think the 10 to 15 minutes we spend each morning on getting a Rock Solid Start are some of the most important minutes of our day.”

Rockford Construction has implemented the Rock Solid Start program in its offices as well, using the stretching program to help minimize common office-based repetitive use injuries, and communicating office-specific information to team members on a weekly basis. The office Rock Solid Start involves team members from all parts of the company, including construction management, property management, real estate development and First Cut, Rockford’s custom carpentry, millwork and hard surface manufacturing team.

“Thinking Safety First is a core value of our company and we see the benefits of our Rock Solid Start program in all parts of the business,” Rozich said. “We know that this simple but important preventative safety measure can help reduce risk of injury and help mitigate risk in a significant way.”

The Rock Solid Start program will be launched on every one of Rockford Construction’s new jobs in the future and is currently in place at more than half a dozen Rockford projects.

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