Bombardier – Safety Culture Change

Bombardier is the world’s leading manufacturer of planes, trains and trams. With a major incident in 2015 involving a fatality and serious injuries, improving safety was a top priority. Engaging Interchange to help the manufacturer transform its safety culture was an important next step for the organisation.


Our discovery phase involved working with a cross section of the Bombardier workforce to understand their current challenges and vision for the future. We spent significant time in Bombardier’s Asia Pacific operations – meeting with employees both individually and in groups. We also worked closely with executives globally to understand their mindset and their perceptions of safety. By the completion of this phase, we had met with 5% of Bombardier’s Asia Pacific workforce.


Early in our design process we recognised that providing a one-size fits all solution would not work for Bombardier, as they operate in different geographies, with specific needs, drivers and priorities. Our insight that western style communications programs, designed and then simply translated into local languages would not work, was validated by the executive leadership of the business.

Through a process of brainstorming, rapid prototyping and testing, we arrived at a total of eight different safety culture programs to allow for cross-cultural and organisational level variances. We kept 70% of the core content the same across each program, and tailored 30% to the region and its specific levels of expertise.


Using our ELITETM (Engage, Learn, Integrate, Teach and EmbedTM) methodology to deliver one and two day face-to-face workshops, we delivered the safety culture programs in purpose-built mobile learning environments, designed and constructed by Interchange.

After discovering that Bollywood is a great influencer of behaviour in India – just as film culture is in Australia – we created films that could be used in both countries to communicate safety messages. For India, a singing, dancing Bollywood-style, Hindi language film was built and our down-under counterpart incorporated safety messages into a comedy film that resonated with the Australian sense of humour.


As a result of our culture change programs, Bombardier was able to achieve significant improvements in safety:

  • There was a 49% decrease in the Australian incident rate from 2016-2017.
  • There was a 12% improvement in people’s willingness to speak up about safety.

Supporting assets:

To ensure our safety culture programs could be delivered anywhere in the world, we deployed a number of supporting assets to ensure widespread understanding of these programs.


Interchange has been partnering with Bombardier over the past few years supporting our culture transformation. The creativity, passion and professionalism of the team is to be commended, and the results attained by my company as a result have been superb. The return on investment has far exceeded our expectations.

Andrew Dudgeon, Managing Director, Bombardier Transportation
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