Healthy workload, positive leaders and digital stress were some of the topics taken up at this year’s SAN conference. SAN’S 60th anniversary was celebrated with a historic perspective.
This year’s conference theme, ”The organisational and social work environment – a challenge for shipping,” was clearly very relevant due to the new regulation in this area. With 130 participants, the hall at ”Läppstiftet” was full to the gills. The first speaker was Pernilla Wallin from the Swedish Transport Agency. She explained how the new regulation on the organisational and social work environment clarifies the responsibility of the employer for the crew’s well-being and work situation, but that individual workers must also have the courage to speak up when things get too much. Anders Reuter from the Swedish Confederation of Transport Enterprises talked about the legal consequences of non-compliance with the new regulation, while Britta Patriksson from Patriksson HR gave examples of how the regulation can be integrated in daily work.
Stressful IT Solutions
”We already have a lot of the new ideas in place thanks to systematic work environment management and the ISM Code. Jonas Söderström from Inuse Experience talked about stress caused by over-complicated payroll systems and other web-based programs. He referred to a study in which uniformed personnel (firemen, policemen and soldiers) were asked to describe what they felt was most stressful in their work situation. The answer was not the risks or dangerous situations they sometimes had to face, but complicated IT systems.
”The times when IT solutions made things easier for us is past,” said Jonas Söderström.
Per Barkman from Crewcomp showed some samples from the training course in equal treatment that he has produced, with financial support from the Swedish Mercantile Marine Foundation. The course is web-based, available in both Swedish and English and takes about half an hour to complete. It is free and will be available sometime in November. Jörgen Zachau and Alexander Hurtig from the Swedish Accident Investigation Authority (SHK) explained how SHK carries out its investigations. They gave an example of an accident in 2015, when a crane failure on board the Oslo Wave came close to seriously injuring of a member of the deck crew. After the last coffee break there was a panel discussion mediated by the work environment researcher and SAN member Cecilia Österman. There were union representatives, employers and representatives from the Swedish Transport Agency to answer questions about their opinion of the new regulation, the division of responsibilities and the importance of working with psychosocial issues. Then it was Torbjörn Dalnäs’ turn, as author and journalist, to tell us about the 60-year history
of SAN and the role that SAN has played in improving the work environment on board Swedish ships. The day ended with a look into the future by Peter Jodin from Wallenius Marine. He talked about coming closer to the days of unmanned ships, but pointed out the need for major changes before this can be realised in terms of safety.