The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted businesses in more ways than one. It has caused disruption of the supply chain on one hand and created new risks for employees on the other. It has made returning to work challenging due to the continued need for protection against the virus as well as reinforced the need to strengthen safety and health management at the enterprise.
As businesses restart, they have to continue to address risks to employees and create safer workplaces. Health and safety leaders also have to ensure a resilient supply chain which may require reboarding existing suppliers and onboarding new ones.
Standards such as ISO 9001, 14001, and 45001 as well as OSHA stress on the need for a risk-based approach to identify existing risks to safety and health and predict new ones. This is to:
- Ensure a safe workplace for their employees
- Mitigate organizational risks in a timely fashion
- Keep costs in check with a preventive mindset
- Identifying potential new risks
- Organizational risk-appetite
- Defining your risk-management approach
Being able to anticipate risks, assess their impact and observe the threats to safety across the organization have become all the more important over the last few quarters amidst the pandemic.
A Risk-Based Approach to EHS Management
Safety leaders can take corrective measures in a timely manner as well as prevent future occurrences with the following:
- An improved reporting system not only for hazards or events but also near misses
- A metrics and data-driven system to assess and evaluate the criticality of events and prioritize action
- Reporting and analytics capabilities to identify trends ahead of time
- AI-enabled “suggestions” to sort various risks based on priority and criticality
- A document management process for regulatory reporting as well as a repository for historical data that is easy to access from any time, any where
- Training management workflow to share the learnings with employees and make them partners in prevention and reporting
End-to-end visibility of processes and events, as well as near misses, is essential for a safety leader to be able to take corrective action and preventive action ahead of time. This can be challenging in a manual system due to the complexity of processes and the need for keeping track of the many internal and external factors that can impact the health of the organization. With a manual system, data and information does not flow seamless across team members. It slows down collaboration efforts and easy fixes get missed out because of oversight. Managing safety risks in the supply chain as well as workplace safety at all locations (factories, offices, retail, etc.) is almost impossible with a manual or pen-paper-and-email system.
Automation of health and safety management with a cloud-based solution such as the EHS from ComplianceQuest can help safety leaders identify, analyze, do a root cause analysis, take corrective and preventive action, report to regulatory authorities and train their employees on safety requirements with confidence.
This is made possible by:
- Enabling Safety Event Reporting allowing workers to report incidents, anonymously, if required, and improve the effectiveness as well as the speed of response
- Define safety parameters and trigger CAPA for critical risks to investigate and address unwanted events, hazards and to facilitate change management
- Assign roles and responsibilities, monitor the workflow and provide full visibility as the process moves through verification of effectiveness
- Define the schedule and checklists for worksite inspections, and assess the type and level of safe activity for all or specific locations
- Not just negative events, but reporting of positive observations also should be enabled for capturing data trends, assigning investigations and sharing lessons learned postings with the workforce
- Ensure safety compliance as well as stakeholder management for identifying H&S risks and initiating a root cause analysis
- Facilitate risk management with a hazards & risks document, categorize risks using a rating methodology, classify them based on the function/process /activity, implement a hierarchy of controls while determining control measures, assign risk owners and frequency of review, evaluate and alter the risk level based on the effectiveness
- Improve Health and Safety communication and transparency
The EHS solution from ComplianceQuest is built on the robust, cloud-based Salesforce.com and is therefore scalable, flexible and customizable. The health and safety incident reporting solution easily integrates with supplier and risk management modules, making it a truly complete automated workflow for health and safety management at an enterprise.
Designed to drive efficiency and effectiveness, it empowers safety leaders to proactively mitigate risks to employee health and safety. It provides the management with oversight on the nature of risks and enables informed decision making on health and safety policies. It improves employee participation in reporting incidents and near misses, raises their awareness on health and safety best practices.
To know more about ComplianceQuest Risk Management for EHS, visit us here: https://www.compliancequest.com/risk-management-software/
To find out how your enterprise can benefit from ComplianceQuest’s Work, Health and Safety Management solution, click here:
We recently published a whitepaper titled “The Growing Significance and Evolving Dimensions of Health and Safety in the Post-Pandemic Era” that covers this subject of risk-aware EHS management in greater detail. Read it here.