Worth its Weight in Gold: How Data Has Become the Driving Force Behind Effective EHSQ Decision-Making

Data and analysis to drive decision-making

In the words of acclaimed engineer, statistician, professor and author, W. Edwards Deming: “In God we trust, all others must bring data.” While Deming passed away over 25 years ago, those words ring true even today.


The Importance of Sound Decision-Making in EHSQ


While the importance of making thoroughly researched and well-analyzed decisions is important in most areas of business, in the EHSQ field, it is even more so as the safety of workers and the environment is the number one goal.

According to experts at BLR: “Data can identify trends, challenges and opportunities, and data-driven organizations know more about their processes and the markets in which they operate, providing them with more options when identifying strategies to respond to disruption and gain an advantage over less-agile competitors.”


The Growing Demand for Data


To highlight the growing popularity and applicability of data, reputable sources such as the Economist have … Read more...

Data Never Sleeps: The Role of Big Data and Leadership Analytics in Shaping Safety Management Programs

Data in Safety Management Programs

A wise man once said: “You can have data without information, but you cannot have information without data” (in this case, the wise man was Daniel Keys Moran, a US-based computer programmer and science fiction writer).

In this day and age, you don’t have to be a scientist to understand the power of data. It is everywhere from our work environments to our personal lives. Let’s face it—how many of us would be willing to change our habits when it comes to our smart phones? That being the case, it should come as no surprise that data has found its rightful place in safety management as well.


What the Experts are Saying


But don’t just take my word for it. Safety expert Chuck Pettinger, Ph.D., Process Change Leader for Predictive Solutions Corp. is a long-time champion of data-driven safety management programs. According to him, there is a need for safety … Read more...

NAEM Provides Insight into Emerging Tech Trends for Environment, Health, Safety, and Sustainability

According to technology thought leaders, we are now in the midst of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. In this scenario, the mechanized manufacturing of the First Industrial Revolution of the nineteenth-century, the mass production of industry in the Second Industrial Revolution in the early twentieth-century, and the computerized processes of the middle of the twentieth-century have given way to the smart, data-driven automation of the twenty-first-century. Manual processes have been replaced by the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), and Natural Language Processing (NLP). Processes that used to require significant personal attention and maintenance can now be fully automated with minimal human interaction and can generate vast amounts of data that can be analyzed to produce information for critical, real-time decision making across the organization.

Leaders in environment, health, safety, and sustainability (EHS&S) are justified in being excited for these developments. Greater automation means machines and … Read more...

Shining Light on Dark Data

What is dark data? It could be your organization’s greatest asset, if you know where to find it. We’ll tell you where.

There are insights about your business and EHSQ processes hiding in plain sight… if you know where to look.

Data that is collected — but never shared, mined, or leveraged to gain business insights — is called dark data. Every organization has dark data, which translates to missed opportunities for learning, insights, and performance improvement. Although it’s mostly discussed in the context of expanding the use of Internet of Things (IoT) devices in industrial contexts, there is another

Since storage has become relatively inexpensive (particularly cloud storage), the challenge presented by dark data is growing. While much of dark data resides in enterprise data warehouses, and databases that support Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems, there’s another source that is even more compelling: … Read more...

Why Your People Are Your Most Important Metric

In the workplace, health and safety strategies specify the need for actions that management expects. Efforts to meet such expectations are employed and measured to ensure a successful journey. Though it is doubtful you are at war where you work, Sun Tzu’s approach involved first looking at the battlefield in detail (your organization), evaluating the enemy (poor performance), understanding any strengths or weaknesses (gaps in the management system) as well as the capabilities (resources) required to win. Once all of this is done, it’s merely a question of deciding what must be deployed and monitored for victory.  

Though they are not exciting parts of the process, the acts of measuring and evaluating how well the organization has implemented its health and safety strategies are the measure of management system success. Metrics are measures used to track, monitor and gain an understanding of the effectiveness of business processes. Such measures are … Read more...

Define Systems of Record to Boost Performance

Quality depends on data because effective decision making depends on data. As a result, successful business and process outcomes will depend on building a culture of quality around data. This includes creating and following management processes to make data accessible, available, and accurate.

One strategy for improving process quality through data is to identify master data and decide which system of record will hold each type of master data. This is similar to knowing who the experts are in your company, knowing how to find them when you need them, and getting assurance that they will provide you with accurate, up-to-date information. For example, your Environment, Health, Safety & Quality (EHSQ) system may be your system of record for emissions, incidents, exposure data, and quality events, providing a single source of truth for these processes.

Master Data

Master data is some of the most important data your organization has – … Read more...

Next Generation Quality: It’s All About the Data

As early as 2015, McKinsey’s “Digital America” report projected that adoption of Industry 4.0 technologies in manufacturing alone was expected to increase domestic GDP by over $2 Trillion by 2025. This estimate, developed from expectations surrounding productivity enhancements, waste reduction using methods from lean manufacturing, and new business models enabled by technologies like 3D printing and practices such as remanufacturing, is on track to not only be met — but exceeded.

Manufacturing is Being Revitalized

All of these sea changes are happening because of data – and the software used to collect, manipulate, and understand it. While traditional manufacturing jobs have relied on physical and mechanical skills, new manufacturing jobs require additional cognitive skills. As a result, manufacturers are scrambling to identify and roll out technology training for workers that will best support these emerging needs. At the same time, organizations recognize that institutional memory remains critical. Job shadowing … Read more...