Getting Management Buy-in for EHS Initiatives
Earlier this month, we published a whitepaper titled “EHS Management ROI”. The paper focused on the importance of understanding both the tangible and intangible benefits of using modern software to manage the end-to-end EHS (Environment, Health, Safety) processes and workflows.
Here, we cull out some key highlights from that paper:
- Why do all enterprises need a safety management strategy that is a combination of reactive, preventive, and proactive?
- Why EHS management must go beyond compliance, and it is the job of the EHS leaders to showcase the business benefits of better environmental, health, and safety practices.
- The direct impact of better EHS management on reducing operational costs, enhancing business potential and growth, and minimizing risk.
- Why a well-designed EHS strategy and a planned roadmap is a “must have” for any business.
In this blog, we talk about how as an EHS leader one must use the right data strategy and communication approach to get management buy-in for implementing EHS initiatives. Also, it is important to note that it is not only about getting management buy-in just to get the budgets approved. Using data at the core, it is possible to constantly improve your approach to EHS management, improve operational processes and build an overall culture of safety.
Based on our experience of serving EHS teams around the world, we recommend this three-pronged approach to getting management buy-in.
#1 - Showcase the tangible benefits of better EHS management
The first step to getting management buy-in is obvious: focus on aspects important to the senior leadership. Talk about the direct impact of better health and safety practices on optimizing operational costs and employee well-being. Both these matter to senior leaders at the company, and they’ll understand where you're coming from as an EHS leader. Avoiding incidents on the shop floor, minimizing factory downtime, and ensuring high employee morale are all critical factors that must be brought in.
Key tangible benefits of better EHS management include:
- Operational excellence - which is impossible without the right EHS practices
- To ensure long-term, sustainable revenue growth - health, safety, and environmental risks must be tackled proactively and quickly
- Regulatory compliance and avoidance of fines/penalties is a no-brainer
It is also important to convey that modern software, with AI and automation capabilities, is critical for streamlining the end-to-end EHS workflow. If you’re meeting with a senior leader regarding the automation of EHS processes, we recommend using a “Show - Don’t Tell” approach to showcase the benefits of automation. Ideally, use a modern EHS tool for a critical process like incident management - and showcase how things would work with and without automation. It'll become obvious to the leadership that automation is the only way forward.
#2 - Use data and dashboards to back up your request
At ComplianceQuest, our product management and solutions teams have had some amazing conversations with safety leaders from construction, pharmaceutical, medical device, oil & gas, manufacturing, and many other sectors. The one point they often make is: “Let data do the talking”. Pull up dashboards and reports on past incidents, safety observations, key safety risks that pose a risk to the business, etc.
In your meeting with senior leaders, showcase how EHS initiatives will impact key business risks. This would give them the impetus to act quickly and realize the value proposition of a modern EHS tool to enhance environment, health, and safety practices.
#3 - Focus on EHS risks and explain why these need to be addressed
According to the National Safety Council, the cost due to injuries at the workplace was estimated at $163.9 billion in 2020.
This includes costs associated with the following, among other items:
- Wage and productivity losses
- Medical expenses
- Administrative expenses
- Employers’ uninsured costs
- Fire losses
- Damage to motor vehicles
Proactively mitigating risks is a critical component of senior management decision-making. They need to take into account business risks, operational risks, financial risks, and reputational risks. While planning EHS initiatives, keep these major risks in mind and plan accordingly.
To get a more detailed understanding of Safety Management ROI read this Whitepaper:https://www.compliancequest.com/whitepaper/ehs-management-roi/
To request a demo of ComplianceQuest’s EHS Solution, drop in here: https://www.compliancequest.com/lp/ehs/