EHS approaches for Industry 4.0

Industry 4.0

Improving EHS performance is emerging as a mission-critical mandate in industries as the focus on adapting EHS tools is increasing. Industries today find it imperative to move beyond the traditional EHS data reporting systems. As the recent technology trends have allowed us to collect high-quality data and perform advanced analysis to produce actionable insights in real-time.

These systems are increasingly leveraged in industrial turnaround activities to optimize project schedules and productivity- which produce a measurable Return-on –Investment (RoI). Integrating data with technology in safety is a great force multiplier, a tool for corporate control which drives a strong engagement in safety programs.

When companies seek to become top performers in their respective fields, embracing digital strategies help them standardize and automate data collection. Technology impacts EHS functioning, s0 let us take a look at few technology tools that are taking hold:

1. Cloud-based solutions

These solutions allow information to flow freely, become cross-functional and move across organizational boundaries, thereby delivering, greatest value from the investment. Data can be made available irrespective of the time and location, thus ensuring that the worker can readily access the information needed for performing tasks and decision-making. This know-how embodied in the cloud-based systems provide a channel for the institutional knowledge to be used effectively.

2. Integrated suite for safety

Software are considered and used in terms of functional silos; eg. Incident management, Document management etc. but in the real-world, they do not operate in a disjointed manner. An EHS task comprises of observations, data capture, collaboration, analysis and reporting. Integrated platforms ensure preferred processes to be implemented without friction or confusion which can be caused by switching between devices, packaging or interfaces. The integrated suite can offer a consistent and intuitive experience and aid in the development of safety culture.

3. Use of mobiles

The capability ensures the personnel to take EHS resources with them, wherever they go. Be it for an inspection, capturing data such as incident reports or observations, working with a specific procedure, managing actions or site history, mobiles are those handy takeaways for managing EHS-related data. This extension of mobile platform onto the site facilitates on-the-spot data capture and benefits for multiple business functions.

4. Cutting-edge technologies

A range of technologies are available, which include smart glasses, wearables, Bluetooth beacons and virtual assistants, which place intelligence at the edge of the network, and facilitate data capture and reception. Here are the innovations in technology that are hot-footing in EHS.

  • Voice-activated technologies, which allow workers for direct interaction with the enterprise platform by voice, provide updates on status, can look up for information on incident statistics, regulatory standards.
  • Sensory equipment to read worker location to prevent access to unauthorized work areas. The data from the sensors can be used to validate worker productivity, equipment use and associated costs.
  • Connecting site workers with colleagues in remote areas through smart glasses, providing real-time audio and visual sharing to support collaboration on audits, connecting on-site worker with a site-specialist or a manager.
  • Wearable sensors for monitoring worker activities and health, to capture data on urgent health-related issues. Tracking and monitoring employee safety and health in potentially hazardous environments.
  • Predictive analytics to identify facilities with highest risks of incidents, expressing caution and requiring extra attention from an EHS staff.
  • In-vehicle monitoring systems to monitor vehicle performance and capturing images in and out of a vehicle to reduce risky driving behaviors.

These are just samples of a myriad innovations that are capturing the market and providing unprecedented opportunities for insights based on analytical analysis. The greater insights boost confidence in predicting and managing future performance. By establishing a pervasive data presence, an organization can turn its EHS data into a powerful tool for a stellar safety performance.

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