Do You Need Both a Pre Task Plan and a Job Hazard Analysis?



Is a Pre Task Plan (PTP) necessary once the Job Hazards Analysis (JHA) is in place? Some construction site managers say that these documents are redundant—one or the other will do. While others, including OSHA claim that both reports are powerful because of the specific and important job site needs they address.

Who’s right? Let’s dive in and get to the bottom of this ongoing debate.

Where Do a Pre Task Plan and a JHA Fit Into the Big Picture?

A Pre Task Plan and a JHA are the last two of four traditional core construction site planning steps:

 Injury and Illness Prevention Program, I2P2, Safety Program, or HSE Program

  1. Site or Project-Specific Safety and Health Plans
  2. JHA, Activity Hazard Analysis, or Job Safety Analysis
  3. Pre Task Plan or Pre Task Safety and Health Plan


What is a JHA?

As OSHA’s Job Hazard Analysis guideline (OSHA 3071) explains, a JHA is critical to the safe completion of any construction project and should cover the following seven elements:

  • the input of your organization’s management and employees,
  • the reviewing of accident history,
  • brainstorming sessions,
  • a prioritization list tackling the most hazardous of activities first,
  • an outline of steps for each task,
  • the hazards associated with each step, and
  • the organization’s mitigation expectations.


Successful construction organizations complete a JHA well in advance so they can fully apply their trade knowledge, assess the end-to-end risks, and outline needed resources. Pre-through project-commencement tools and protections are detailed, which typically include time-intensive employee training, general contractor aid, and trade partner evaluations.


What is a Pre Task Plan?

Completed in the field, a Pre Task Plan relies on the bones of the JHA to determine if additional hazards have cropped up, to maintain expectations across the board, and to provide a just-in-time training team tool.

 Created daily, the Pre Task Plan keeps tabs on substantive project plan changes. It is also an eyes-on-the-ground look at above, below, and behind workspaces for hazards such as:

  • moving equipment,
  • falls,
  • chemicals, as well as
  • housekeeping issues.


When are Both a JHA and a Pre Task Plan Needed?

The JHA and Pre Task Plan are both necessary because the JHA is focused on the kind of tools, protections, resources, and training requirements that can’t be completed in the field.

The Pre Task Plan takes a closer, real-time look at specific work locations and conditions like the environment and adjacent works. It allows your crews to evaluate they have the required materials, tools, and PPE to suit the work method outlined in the JHA. This just-in-time planning ensures the on-site crew also understands and agrees to the expectations and works method. 

Most importantly, a Pre Task Plan will solve your most common construction worksite issues like:

  • planning
  • productivity
  • re-work costs
  • injury risk
  • task-specific training
  • insurance claim costs

Plus it doubles as an audit trail since it is a day-to-day record of who was involved in each task.


The Bottom Line

Underserving the client, employee safety, and costly mistakes are among the risks you take without a Pre Task Plan. It is impossible to complete OSHA’s guidelines just-in-time, so this activity will help you fill in the gap each day with a comprehensive update of meaningful mitigation strategies.


How do I Create an Effective Pre Task Plan?

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