Goal 3: Ensure efficient, effective and safe delivery of business outcomes

Two people inspecting a logging operation

“We are self-sustaining and profitable and continue to invest in the long-term economic health of the timber industry in regional Western Australia.”

Our State Government partners

Working together, we will ensure that the forestry  industry remains viable and continues to create jobs into the future. 

Emergency service performing a drill

Department of Premier and Cabinet

We are a member of the State Government steering committee and the pines working group on the Strategic Assessment of the Perth and Peel Region.

 

A nursery with two workers repotted saplings

Department of Water and Environmental Regulation

We are a member of the Water for Food technical advisory group, and partner on activities in the Wellington catchment. In 2017 we will deliver around 2,000 hectares of pine plantings in the catchment.

 

A boardroom environment, with all members posing for the camera

Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development

We are a member of the Biosecurity Senior Officers Group and maintain a close relationship with the Western Australian Biosecurity Council.

 

Department of Fire and Emergency Services

We are a member of the State Bushfire Coordinating Committee. Our staff are involved in prescribed burning and fire suppression.

 

Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions

We provide DBCA with $10 million per year for forest management, and $200,000 has been invested to fund a sandalwood enforcement officer.

 

Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage

We seek to increase opportunities for Aboriginal engagement and jobs in the forestry industry. We are supporting  the establishment of a sandalwood processing facility in Kalgoorlie.

 

 

Working with government

View of a timber plantationDuring the year, we continued to provide strategic, planning and policy frameworks for the FPC and industry in collaboration with government, stakeholders and the community.

The Forest Industry Working Group, established to encourage industry innovation and research, successfully secured $500,000 to support a number of projects to deliver a vision for the forestry industry in Western Australia. Work on these projects has now commenced.

Development has begun on the Timber Industry Development Plan, a strategic growth plan for Western Australia’s forest industry. It will define key directions and identify specific actions required to maximise forestry’s contribution to social, economic and environmental development of the State.

The Farm Forestry Framework will define mechanisms required to allow farm forestry to develop, paving the way for an increase in the plantation estate. This strategy will promote a viable local softwood industry by ensuring a sufficient plantation base for long-term resource supply. 

The Transition to Native Sandalwood Plantations project will support the sustainability and profitability of the high-value sandalwood industry. This project will develop a clear set of evidence based processes ensuring the industry is established with a mix of wild-grown and plantation native sandalwood.

The Branding and Marketing Western Australian Native Hardwood project will develop a marketing strategy for the State’s native timbers, strengthening demand and increasing returns on high-value products.

The Farm Forestry Framework is an important part of the Softwood Industry Strategy for Western Australia. It aims to create a viable and competitive plantation industry in the South West, expand the regional economy and create jobs.

Business improvements

A worker using a mobile tool to help do their jobWe continue to strive for business efficiency. In the past year, we progressed the development of our integrated corporate system. 

The functionality around contract management and stakeholder systems was completed and the development of a new deliveries and billing system was started.

The design and development of this integrated solution is focused on providing a centralised system for all corporate information that can be accessed by a mobile workforce. 

Improved bandwidth and stabilised corporate systems access has been rolled out to locations in Kensington, Harvey, Manjimup, Albany, Esperance, Nannup and West Manjimup.

We have progressed with capturing data electronically in the field, with a number of manual forms converted to electronic format and integrated into general work practices.

Our workforce plan

Infographic stating that 70% of workers are regionally locatedOur five-year Workforce and Diversity Plan 2014-2019 outlines our opportunities, challenges, priorities and initiatives to ensure our staff have the capability to effectively lead the FPC now and into the future. 

The outcomes achieved since the introduction of the plan include: 

  • enhancements to the performance management system to allow employees to understand how they contribute to the strategic business objectives;
  • implementation of an integrated learning and development system;
  • significant investment in training and development; and
  • a scholarship program that has encouraged several staff to progress postgraduate studies and has produced project work that has directly informed the business.

We put a strategy in place to ensure the FPC was within public sector guidelines for excess leave. We reduced our excess leave liability by $1,094,507 by 30 June 2017, and we had no leave outside of guidelines at the end of the financial year.

Aboriginal and youth employment

Youth employment initiatives from the FPCWe are constantly striving for improvement and through our Our Equal Opportunity Plan, we have identified a need to increase opportunities for Aboriginal and youth employment.

Acting on this, we have implemented:

  • working relationships with the Clontarf Foundation in both Bunbury and Kalgoorlie to develop Aboriginal traineeship and employment opportunities;  
  • working relationship with Manea College to develop traineeship and employment opportunities throughout the South West;
  • an Aboriginal traineeship position in Kalgoorlie working in the sandalwood industry; and
  • two Aboriginal School Based Traineeships working across the South West native forest, plantations or silviculture branches.

In addition, during the year, two of the mainstream integrated harvesting contracts were awarded to registered Aboriginal businesses. 

Our trainee program is not just about increasing Aboriginal engagement; it is also about building a succession plan to make sure we are developing young people and the next generation of foresters.

Sustainable forest management performance

Regeneration of plantation timberEnvironmental management systems and compliance

Our operational activities have three management levels to ensure our forest and plantation operations meet all relevant compliance requirements. 

This three-tiered system includes: 

  • the FPC’s own Integrated Forest Management System;
  • DBCA’s environmental compliance monitoring and reporting; and
  • external independent audit of our systems and processes for environmental management.

View of a forest looking upwards to a canopyExternal monitoring – Department of Biosecurity, Conservation and Attractions and Forest Management Plan

We implement environmental management practices consistent with the principles of ecologically sustainable forest management as described in the Conservation and Land Management Act 1984 and the FMP.

In conjunction with the DBCA, we implemented a program to monitor log utilisation from harvested coupes. It allows us to monitor and improve operational efficiencies in line with the FMP. We also report annually on key performance indicators related to forest utilisation, forest regeneration and general forest management. These indicators can be found on page 111.

In 2017-2018, the DBCA and the Conservation Commission will undertake a mid-term performance review of the FMP. We are currently preparing key performance information for the DBCA. The mid-term performance report will be published in 2018.

Cutting a stem for propagation of the plantExternal monitoring – Forest Stewardship Council’s® (FSC®) Controlled Wood Standard (FSC-STD-30-010; FSC-C120630) 

During the year, we have reviewed our Karri forest management plan to meet the requirements of the Forest Stewardship Council’s® (FSC®) Controlled Wood Standard (FSC-STD-30-010; FSC-C120630) and the associated FSC Australia’s High Conservation Values (HCVs) evaluation framework. 

We undertake stakeholder consultation on the identification of HCVs within the defined forest management unit (FMU) and the precautionary measures in place to protect them. 

The Australian Forestry Standard (AFS) is internationally recognised and endorsed by the Programme for Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC), an international organisation. 

AFS and PEFC logos

In February 2017, we were externally audited by SAI Global against both the ISO 14001 standard and the AFS as part of a routine surveillance audit which resulted in continued certification. 

System improvements were identified and will form part of our forward work programs, leading up to the next surveillance audit scheduled for November 2017.

There were no major environmental incidents recorded in 2016-2017.

Occupational safety and health

Staff inspecting timber loaded onto a truckWe remain committed to providing a safe and healthy work environment for our staff and contractors. During 2016-2017, our work in this area continued. 

Our occupational safety and health committee was restructured following a review of our safety management systems. 

We continue to participate in the Australian Forest Products Association Safety Committee. The Committee is working to develop national standards for best practice log truck load restraint, training competencies and machine safety. 

With a commitment to safety and health, the FPC is currently developing a strategy to manage the risk of alcohol and other drugs in the workplace. The strategy will include processes for drug and alcohol testing.

We investigated strategies to lower the risks associated with driving. 

The hazard risk register has been improved to assist the organisation to prioritise its prevention activities.

Our employees have access to an annual skin cancer screening through a sun safety strategy. 

We provided online incident reporting refresher training to improve employee awareness about incident reporting requirements, and to ensure lessons learned from incidents help to improve safety. 

During 2016-2017, we conducted an independent review of our safety management systems. 

Log truck safety

During 2016-2017, our Chain of Responsibility Steering Committee made improvements to the process of monitoring and tracking truck load mass compliance. 

In a proactive approach to safety, we organised rollover prevention training for the Western Australia timber industry. In total, 259 people attended.

We also held a log truck rollover workshop, providing a forum for contractors to discuss rollover risks, and discuss new preventative initiatives.

Our Safety Management Systems were reviewed during the year, and actions implemented.

Safety incidents

Workers compensation statistics for FPC staff

Indicator * 2015 - 2016 2016 - 2017 Target
Number of fatalities ** 0 0 0
Lost time injury/disease incident rate 1.27 0.59 0
Lost time injury severity rate 0 0 0
Percentage of injured workers returned to work within (i) 13 weeks and (ii) 26 weeks (i) 100%
(ii) 0
(i) 0
(ii) 0
100%
100%
Percentage of managers trained in OSH and injury management >80% >80% 80%

* The statistics are reported in accordance with the Public Sector Commission’s Circular 2012-05 Code of Practice OSH in the Western Australian Public Sector.
** Whilst there were no FPC employee fatalities to report for the 2016–2017 year, there was a fatality of an FPC contractor’s employee.