One of the challenges facing companies, particularly those dealing with major hazards, is deciding whether they have enough people to operate safely? This is a difficult question to answer and is rarely purely about the number of people.  Put simply, having a small number of competent people who can work well together is usually better than having more, less competent people.

The staffing challenge

Modern control roomNew technology allows a lot of activities that were performed manually in be automated. This appears to suggest that less people are required to achieve the same rate work than would have been the case in the past.  Whilst this is undoubtedly true, one of the main problems is that the workload created during normal activities gives little indication of the workload created by unplanned and unwanted events and emergencies.  The challenge for companies is to maintain a sufficient workforce to cover those high demand events whilst being able to keep them gainfully employed for most of the time when the demands are much less.

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