Following federal, state, and local regulations that govern and enforce safety in our industry, Toll Brothers developed our proprietary Safety Enforcement Escalation (SEE) policy in 2017, designed to assist and inform trade partners of observations or hazardous conditions that could jeopardize the safety of individuals or expose anyone to potential penalties or other legal consequences. Our SEE policy is designed to be a realistic and effective approach to job-site safety and oversight and helps secure the necessary buy-in and support of key players, from our own managerial teams to OSHA directors, law enforcement agencies, and most importantly, the trade partners we rely on each day to build our homes.
As part of our SEE policy, safety violations are documented, and Notice of Hazardous Condition emails are sent to the appropriate contracted vendors to raise awareness and eliminate any observed unsafe acts or conditions, ultimately reducing accidents on construction sites. Documented violations accumulate during each calendar quarter with escalating risk levels as the number of infractions increase. Escalation actions and efforts are determined based on the number and severity of our observations and are classified into Low, Moderate, and High-Risk categories with escalating and corrective response requirements for each category.
Our goal is to promote and build a general culture of safety in, on, and around our job sites and communities throughout the country. Some of our recent accomplishments include:
Successful implementation of the SEE policy
Positive feedback from a wide range of individuals from multiple facets of our industry
Increased hazardous condition reporting efforts
Development and distribution of OSHA/Incident Protocol Wallet Cards throughout the company
Requirement that all Toll Brothers team members associated with operations or Land Development complete the OSHA 10-hour or 30-hour safety courses
Revised Hard Hat policy with reminder cards included in every hard hat distributed by the company
Continuing participation in OSHA's National Safety Stand Down (Platinum Level)
As our SEE policy evolves, we aim to expand our realistic and real-time safety approach to other Toll Brothers entities and departments.
Designing Quality Into Our Homes from the Start
Our approach to quality focuses on having well-defined policies, processes, and procedures and ensuring that we retain highly skilled and competent personnel. No matter the project, achieving quality on the first attempt with minimal need for rework is the goal.
To that end, Toll Brothers has developed and implemented Toll Technical Standards (TTS), a compilation of various technical requirements for critical assemblies. TTS represents the due diligence we have performed in striving to understand the full range of technical requirements that should be adhered to when constructing homes.
Our procurement group incorporates TTS into the scopes of work and contracts, sourcing products that meet specifications and hiring trade partners that are competent to perform work to the standards we require.
TTS are developed in the format of an electronic checklist that can be referenced during construction to ensure proper sequencing and assembly of critical components. The production teams take the information provided to them through construction drawings and scopes of work and supervise our trade partners during construction. Our Construction Managers work to ensure that construction occurs in compliance with code, installation instructions, and industry standards. Spanning architecture, procurement, and construction operations, TTS is the common thread that enables technical consistency from design through completion of construction.
Critical to our continuous improvement efforts is the monitoring of key performance indicators and the implementation of preventive and corrective actions. In 2021, we implemented an enhanced audit program that involves regular unannounced inspections and audits with a weighted emphasis on low-performing divisions. Audit reports are used to develop improvement action plans that are audited further to confirm engagement and improvement.
Quality Assurance Team
Our Quality Assurance team consists of internal technical consultants that provide support to the various technical functions involved in designing and building our homes. The Quality Assurance team monitors changes in code and product requirements and also performs periodic quality control assessments. Additionally, Quality Assurance maintains existing TTS, develops new TTS, provides technical expertise, and conducts technical audits. This integral team ensures collaboration between the major technical functions to maintain overall operational effectiveness and efficiency.
Training and Support
TTS also provides a solid basis for conducting training of Toll Brothers personnel and trade partners. The Quality Assurance team has developed a library of National Assembly Details or construction details that provide clarity for the technical functions on the compilation of various assemblies. These details are also made available to third-party architects for incorporation into their construction drawings. By creating this library of construction details, we are able to better drive consistency and eliminate variation, which in turn improves efficiency and lowers cost.
Using actionable insights, we follow these key practices to help reduce expenses, ensure customer satisfaction post-closing, and drive a culture of continuous improvement:
Sales and Design:
Study how our homeowners are using their homes
Review what design assemblies may be causing challenges or excessive spending
Utilize trade-partner and product-performance insights to analyze total cost of contracting
Explore ways to improve quality in order to reduce service volume after closing
Consider potential exposure that may need to be mitigated