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Selecting a step

For which step do you wish to be certified?

You can indicate in the Webtool which step you wish to be certified for. The respondents are then only given the questions for that step (and also for the lower steps) to answer.

You can always change the step. Please note: This does not apply to questionnaires that have already been completed. Here, the step originally completed remains in force.

Step 1

The company's attitude is: ‘we have no mishaps, we deliver good quality, so why should we waste time on preventive activities’ and ‘what you don’t know won’t harm you’. The company makes little to no investment in improving safety behaviour. This is not the desired attitude and will therefore not be rewarded.

Step 2

The company tends to make changes after things have gone wrong. The response is based on deeply ingrained patterns. Employees are inclined to feel themselves the victim of a situation, rather than personally responsible. ‘But that is not my fault?’ Change behaviour is often ad hoc and short lasting. This behaviour is moderately valued.

Step 3

The company has determined which safety rules are important. It adopts a vulnerable approach, assumes responsibility, but is often driven by self-interest. ‘What's in it for me?’ Involvement in safety and compliance with rules and laws is mainly the task of (senior) management. Attention is given to health and safety, which is valued.

Step 4

Safety has a high priority, is deeply ingrained in the company's operations. Continuous investments are made in raising safety awareness and employees are encouraged to confront one another with unsafe behaviour. Improvements are structurally implemented and evaluated. The approach is characterised by proactivity and initiative. Safety awareness is regarded as an own responsibility: ‘how can I contribute?’. This form of behaviour is highly valued.

Step 5

Safety is fully integrated in the operational processes. It is a fixed item on the agenda during reflection and evaluation within the own organisation and with sector parties. Safety is ingrained in the thinking and behaviour of all employees; it is part and parcel of their work. This is very highly valued.

Achieve the step

The total score is an indication of the step on the basis of the self assessment. No rights can be derived. The actual step is determined by a Ladder Certification Body (LCB).

Independent certification bodies use audits to determine how companies score in terms of safety behaviour. In this process, they use the certification scheme of the Safety Culture Ladder consisting of the aforementioned requirements and accompanying criteria. Assessment takes place on a step-by-step basis.

A company meets the requirements of a certain step if (1) it complies with the minimum requirements per company aspect of the relevant step and those of the lower steps and (2) the sum of the weighted scores of all company aspects of the steps satisfy the minimum requirement prescribed for that step. A progressive approach applies to both the minimum requirement per company aspect and the average per step.


You can consult the Safety Ladder manual here.