May 20, 2020

Part 1 – EHS Incident Management: Leveraging the Past to Influence the Future

This is the first of a three-part series on Environmental, Health and Safety Management. Please subscribe to our blog to keep up to date with the latest industry discussions here >

The majority of managers across various industries and organisations seem to be fixated on measuring and tracking historical data but with little emphasis on leveraging the data for preparation of the future.

Present-Day EHS Management

EHS management is the concept and practice of having systems, processes and procedures in place to ensure the safety of employees and contractors in their workplace environments.

The environmental component in EHS management refers to the surrounding workers are in and all possible hazards, risks and concerns potentially affecting the health and safety of workers and preventing productive operations (such as air, water or land pollution, chemical spills etc.).

The ‘H’ in EHS stands for health and relates to the potential exposures that can negatively impact workers’ health, physically and/or mentally, such as noise, chemicals, pathogens, and pollutants.

Safety is a critical piece in holistic EHS management and focuses on assessing, mitigating, and handling workplace incidents and injuries. 

Why is EHS Management important?

As outlined above, EHS management encompasses a variety of vital aspects which are to be constantly monitored, documented, and understood to ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of an organisation’s workforce as well as their surroundings, both indoor and outdoor. It is important for managers to be aware of these areas to ensure industry best-practices are applied, regulations are followed, and legislations complied with.

The way these EHS components are managed can vary between organisations, yet a consistent hallmark of successful EHS management is having a designated system in place to accommodate EHS management processes.

Many businesses use an EHS management system configured to meet their needs around incident identification, hazard mitigation, real-time documentation, and transparent reporting. Having a designated system in place can make overseeing EHS processes more straightforward, fast and ensure all relevant data is in one central easy-to-access place.

Learning from the past to influence the future

As important as it is to record incidents when they occur, employing extensive investigations to understand why they happened in the first place, and what could have been done to mitigate them has its importance and validity. More importantly, those learnings have to be taken on board to influence future operational decisions.

Incident management processes often fuel the obsession for tracking the past instead of focusing on leveraging the available information to better prepare for the future.

To be able to better prepare for the future and mitigate against fatalities, injuries and illnesses, safety compliance and reporting as well as safety operations improvement is important to incorporate into your strategies. The diagram below outlines how these elements are part of this ‘flow’. 

Incident Management Process Focus on Future

Source: Verdantix from INX Software “Exploring End-to-End EHS Management” webinar


This article is brought to you by our collaboration with Verdantix on our most recent webinar, “Exploring End-to-End EHS Management”.
Get your copy of the webinar recording here >

Stay tuned for part two of our EHS Management series, with “Part 2 – EHS Incident Management: What is Compliance and how you can Achieve Performance Excellence?” coming out next week.



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