Incident management for a Health, Safety and Environment manager has several components, including important aspects of compliance, costs and due diligence.
In the role you have been given, you must ensure that your organization complies with the laws and regulations regarding incident reporting. In addition, you must compile, analyze and control the costs associated with incident management. You are also asked but your organization to do everything in your power to maintain all defenses to ensure due diligence.
In terms of environment, health and safety (EHS), organizations must comply with the recordkeeping laws and regulations. Your organization must know which authorities to report the incidents to and must fill in the required reports within the stipulated time.
The more geographically spread out your organization is, the more complex this task becomes, especially when you must perform a regulatory watch. The authorities will change, the amount of reports will increase, and the deadlines will vary. Moreover, in some countries, in addition to national laws, you must comply with regional and local laws.
Evidently, reports are domain-specific. There are “health and safety” and “environmental” reports.
In short, compliance with laws and regulations requires constant monitoring, appropriate tools and a proactive team.
Incident management costs mainly involve the time invested by your teams for the effective management of incidents.
A lot of time is invested in incident management to:
In every organization, regardless of its business sector, time is a key factor. However, in terms of incident management, it is often necessary to invest a lot of time to go through all the steps mentioned above, to know the real extent of the deviations in your processes and procedures. By taking the time to thoroughly examine every situation, you will be able to prevent further incidents, which are more time consuming than the investigation itself.
As an EHS manager, you also need to spend time on different tasks that involve costs for your organization, such as:
The larger the business, the more complicated the task of compiling and analyzing costs.
An incident management software will allow you to automate these processes so that you can focus on tasks that add value to your organization.
As mentioned earlier, your role as an EHS manager requires you to provide health, safety and environmental performance indicators. These often affect the management of incidents in some way. Some important indicators that can help to properly assess the condition of your program are given below:
By following the above, you can identify the areas where it will be more beneficial to invest time to improve your performance in incident management. Once again, using software can help you obtain that data in just a few clicks.
You have ensured that compliance with laws and regulations is a priority, you manage your costs as per best practices, you conduct programs for prevention, training, equipment and safety products, but despite all of that, you may face an incident such as a death or a major spillage.
The organization may be prosecuted for criminal negligence. In this case, it could rely on one or more defense arguments based on due diligence.
Jurisprudence in EHS identifies three elements essential to this defense: foresight, efficiency and authority. As EHS managers, you are responsible for providing the necessary tools to facilitate this defense.
Your role as a manager does not stop at ensuring that your health, safety and environment team effectively manages incidents that occur in your organization. You must also ensure consistent compliance with standards and laws, tightly manage costs, and provide due diligence to your organization.
The use of a computerized system helps you in every step of this process, for example by speeding up the incident management process, maintaining data, speeding up communication between levels of the organization and also easy and fast creation of dashboards that help in decision-making.
Contact the CONFORMiT team of experts for more information on incident management or for an assessment of your current situation.