Safety & Health Improvement Program (SHIP)




Aug. 2020: Updated version of SHIP, now available! 
The SHIP toolkit provides training for supervisors and managers,
as well as their employees be on the path to improving areas within
their work teams and throughout their organization. SHIP has 
been shown in research studies to:
  • Reduce stress and work-life conflict
  • Increase team communication and effectiveness
  • Improve employee health and safety
  • Enhancements in work processes and practices

Download our SHIP One Pager and SHIP Briefing Slides to share with your organization's leader.

Learn more on how your organization can participate in YourWorkpath Program to access the training program at no cost for up to 200 employees.

*Our toolkits are continually going through improvements and changes to provide your organization with updated and relevant content. SHIP was last reviewed and updated in August 2020.


“Employees were cautious at first, but now they are the ones asking supervisors if they can revisit the team effectiveness goals. They’re really enthusiastic.”


-Suzanne Kahn, Maintenance Director Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT)

Safety & Health Improvement Program Steps


The Start Guide is available to help introduce SHIP to your organization. This guide provides an overview of the toolkit along with step-by-step instructions on how-to implement. The Start Guide includes:

  • Strategies to advocate and create an HR and/or a SHIP champion

Learn more on how your organization can participate in YourWorkpath Program to access the training program at no cost for up to 200 employees.


The Online Supervisor Training is an essential aspect of Safety, Health and Improvement Program and outlines the importance of supervisor support in improving employee health and safety. SHIP supervisor training topics cover: -Leaders ability to improve employee work-life balance and safety -Work-Family/Work-life Support -Safety Supportive Supervisory Behaviors (SSB) -SHIP program overview The training consists of four objectives: -Showing you how leadership can improve the organizational climate on work-life balance and safety and health of their employees -Providing insight on how to be supportive of employee work-life balance -Highlights how to provide supervisor support for workplace safety -Detailing the importance of team building and goal setting, as well as reducing inefficiencies for work processes There are 3 options to get access to the SHIP online training: 1. The components of the SHIP toolkit are free, however an licensing agreement and survey questions are required to access the training. We will give you access to the Learning Managment System (LMS) training files after the license is signed. Please contact us to obtain a license or more information to the online training. 2. Participate in YourWorkpath Program to gain access to the entire toolkit for up to 200 employees including additional incentives for your organization. Contribute to occupational health sciences research. 3. Access supervisor online training licensing cost directly through NwETA: $25 per user license. * Purchase training now. *The computer-based training link listed will take you to a website external to Yourworkpath. NwETA, LLC is the company that collaborates with OHSU in the offering of the trainings in these toolkits. OHSU has a financial interest in this company and Dr. Anger, who is the Director of Applied Science at Oregon Institute of Occupational Health Sciences at OHSU, is the company's President. If you would like more information about this, please contact the OHSU Integrity Department at (503) 494-8849 or


The Behavior Tracking activity is designed to improve the transfer of trained behaviors following the Online Supervisor Training. This activity involves your choice of using a: notecard, log, journal or phone app to set goals and track supportive behaviors. Choose a method that works best for your organization/team. Behavior tracking will take between 3 to 5 minutes per day over a two-week period. This activitly will help supervisors and managers reinforce what is learned in the online training, as well as track supportive supervisor patterns towards their employees. The SHIP Start-Guide includes a “how-to guide” to faciliate behavior tracking. The tracking activity has the following elements:

  • Daily Tracking Card
  • 3x5 index card option
  • Lanyard card option
There are also smart phone behavior tracking apps available to download from the Apple Store or Google Play. We recommend the below apps:
  • Upkeep
  • Momentum
  • Habit-Bull
*OHWC does not endorse or maintain the smart phone apps listed. They are additional options to track behaviors that are not paper-based.


The Team Effectiveness Process (TEP) is a structured group discussion in which supervisors and their teams meet to brainstorm solutions to improve work practices, communication, and the work environment. TEP is a tool developed by our partners, WFD Consulting, and consists of work practice assessments, accompanying tools, and templates. There is an option to hire a facilitator from WFD Consulting if your organization needs assistance on implementation of TEP. Download the TEP Briefing Slides to learn more. Use these slides in conjunction with the TEP implementation during SHIP.


Follow-up and check-ins for supervisors/managers and their employees are an essential aspect of SHIP THAT help ensure what is learned during the SHIP toolkit becomes embedded into everyday work practices. Included in the SHIP User Guide are components to ensure the success of the SHIP trainings.

  • Follow-up guide
  • Quick reference guide that provides the definitions and examples of supportive supervisor behaviors

Ready to download the SHIP Toolkit?

Click the download button to register or sign in for your free download. We collect registrations for reporting purposes only. Your information will never be used for marketing or sold to a third-party.

Why Adopt SHIP?

National statistics report, more than

  • 40% of workers report that their job was very or extremely stressful

  • 25% view their jobs as the number one stressor in their lives

  • Job stress was a greater concern to worker health than either financial or family problems

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics over 3 million nonfatal workplace injuries/illnesses occur annually, which cost employers $1 billion per week in workers' compensation, plus other associated costs such as:

  • Medical expenses

  • Legal services

  • Training replacement employees

  • Accident investigation

  • Lost productivity

  • Implementation of corrective measures


We developed SHIP to address these major organizational concerns and improve employee outcomes. Find out more about how we developed SHIP.

The SHIP toolkit was developed by Dr. Leslie Hammer PhD. Learn more about Leslie and her research at OHSU.

The Science Behind SHIP

Where did SHIP come from? Did you know that it came from a rigorously tested study? Learn the scientific story behind SHIP.

SHIP was designed to increase supervisor and peer support and decrease job strain, which plays a key role in safety compliance and improved physical and mental health. SHIP integrates a focus on both health protection and health promotion by addressing psychosocial factors that are shown to be related to safety (1), well-being (2), and organizational productivity.


The SHIP intervention study was a NIOSH-funded randomized controlled trial focusing on supervisors and their teams. SHIP aimed to increase employee support from supervisors, improve team communication, enhance team effectiveness, and reduce stress and work-family conflict.


The SHIP intervention was composed of:

  • One-hour training for supervisors 

  • Behavior-tracking that reinforced the training principles

  • Team-based planning and problem-solving that utilizes a modified version of WFD Consulting's Team Effectiveness Process

  • Follow-up sessions

The SHIP intervention was tested in the construction industry with a sample of 528 employees. We found that the intervention was effective at reducing worker blood pressure. 


The SHIP study found that the strongest effects were among work crews that needed it most; those with poorer relationships with their supervisor and those with lower team cohesion. This Total Worker Health intervention targeted the supervisor and their teams/work groups to examine effects on work-life balance. Read more in the Journal of Work & Stress.

Also, an adapted version of the SHIP toolkit was developed for the United States Forest Service called the STTEP (Supervisor Training and Team Education Program) that included the online portion of the SHP training. Results showed similar significant outcomes on employee well-being, and descriptively explored the impact of the training on supervisors and employees.


Funding for SHIP was provided by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH; grant: U19OH010154).

Download the latest SHIP intervention study publication.

Have questions? We're here to help.​

Contact us for more information and guidance on how we can help your organization be safe, healthy and well.


Hammer, L., Truxillo, D., Bodner, T., Rineer, J., Pytlovany, A., & Richman, A. (2015). Effects of a workplace intervention targeting psychosocial risk factors on safety and health outcomes: Psychosocial factors and workers health and safety [Special issue]. BioMed Research International, 1-12. doi: 10.1155/2015/8369672.


Hammer, L., Truxillo, D., Bodner, T., Pytlovany, A., Richman, A. & Rineer, J. (In preparation). LMX and Work-Family Intervention Effects.

Hammer, L. B., Truxillo, D. M., Bodner, T., Pytlovany, A., & Richman A. (2019). Exploration of the impact of organizational context on a workplace safety and health intervention. Work and Stress.

Perry, M. & El-Askari, L., Hammer, L., & Brown, N. (2020). Securing your Own Mask before Assisting Others: Effects of a Supervisor Training Intervention on Supervisors and Employees. Occupational Health Science. 

The mission of the Oregon Healthy Workforce Center is to improve the well-being of workers through Total Worker Health® research, dissemination, outreach, and, education. We are housed within the Oregon Institute of Occupational Health Sciences at OHSU

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