The Importance of Learning from Incidents: A Case Study on Contingency Planning

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Kelvin TOP-SET has been investigating incidents, delivering world-class Incident Investigation Training and learning from incidents for almost four decades.

Managing a global team of Tutors and Investigators, and operating in over 48 countries, has exposed us to several significant travel issues over the years. These include regular transport disruptions, visa delays, cancellations, challenging weather changes, swift political shifts, and even a volcanic eruption.

We implement contingencies that mitigate against travel disruptions, missing bags, cancelled hotel bookings, IT equipment breaking, etc. As a rule, we try to expect the unexpected.

TOP-SET creates contingencies by ‘practising what we teach’, learning from incidents, and continuous improvement. We constantly risk assess, learn from success, and learn from the past to improve operations. Our dedicated travel team are available 24/7 to monitor global risk, political climate, and travel problems and keep those in transit safe and on time.

These multiple processes and contingencies may seem like overkill. However, on occasions such as the one below, they have played an essential role in TOP-SET meeting clients’ expectations and us maintaining successful operations.

New Zealand, January 2023

On the 30th of January, New Zealand saw a 1 in 500-year weather event that paralysed transport services and saw Auckland Airport closed under several feet of water.

The TOP-SET Team (Jamie Simpson - Executive Director, Tutor, and Investigator) had two sets of flights cancelled, had to reroute out of a different airport and take a 4WD vehicle through flooded roads and past landslips to make the third set of flights. We had to lean heavily on everything we’ve learned over the past four decades spent contingency planning around our global operations.

Proper pre-course planning, tried-and-tested travel policies and procedures, and an on-call global-support team meant that we arrived in the country well before delivering the Incident Investigation Training courses, without issue.

Learning from past incidents, both positive and negative, will truly make a difference in running a global organisation. It does for ours.

If you would like to know more about how to continually improve your organisation get in touch at:

email: [email protected]
Tel: +44 (0) 1475 560 007