As a business leader operating in the Environmental, Health and Safety (EHS) sector, you might be searching for new methods of improving safety measures in the area where a lot of the action is taking place: on the shop floor. Perhaps you're trying to decrease overhead costs associated with workplace injuries, or maybe you'd like to improve your organization's compliance with OSHA's standards.
According to a news release from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were approximately 2.8 million nonfatal workplace illnesses and injuries reported by private employers in 2017. This occurs at a rate of 2.8 cases for every 100 full-time workers. Another report from the BLS found that there were 5,147 workplace fatalities in 2017, at a rate of 3.6 per 100,000 full-time workers. Although these rates have gradually decreased over time, there's no doubt organizations should revolutionize the safety of their work spaces.
One strategy many businesses have leveraged to improve their workplace safety culture is by incorporating digital tools on their shop floors. Rather than relying on pen and paper techniques, which make it difficult to record incidents in real time, organizations are using EHS apps to ensure their workers are conducting business safely. We've provided some applications that you might find most useful when you implement a comprehensive EHS software into your operations.
Pre-Start Safety Review (PSSR)
A properly conducted PSSR can actively prevent workplace incidents, worker injuries and damage to tools and equipment, while increasing productivity. As its name suggested, it works before various processes begin, operating proactively to ensure any new or altered procedures are safe before startup.
What are some components of a high-functioning PSSR app? It should be able to assign and track action items from the moment they are assigned to the instance they are closed. Additionally, an effective PSSR allows for collaboration among and across teams, developing a multi-disciplined entity of workers partaking in the PSSR. This solution should be able to identify deficiencies in existing systems, offering recommendations to tailor activities to create optimal results. Finally, it should provide a single comprehensive interface that allows individuals to access and assess safety components with configurable, built-in checklists.
Logout/Tagout (LOTO) Permit
Permits are an essential component of LOTO programs that are set in place to make sure all equipment maintenance activity is being conducted safely. By utilizing a safe work permit system, organizations in the EHS space can significantly lower the prevalence of workplace injuries and fatalities resulting from accidental misuse of equipment and tools. A LOTO permit also provides workers with the measures they need to take before de-energizing various pieces of equipment, therefore ensuring that every person going through the LOTO process is doing so safely.
A high-quality LOTO app provides a transparent checklist that contains business rules and standards that match the organization's specific LOTO program. Workers can use this technology to choose from predefined or company-specific controls to choose and communicate any precautions that should be taken into account, as well as any personal protection equipment (PPE) needed in a number of functions. They can also construct a Permit Review and Approval process, as well as a Closeout Authorization, to improve safety and compliance measures and standardize the process. Lastly and possibly most significantly, this app can produce consistency in all permit activities across the organization.
Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) Audit
While the LOTO permit exists to put forth safety measures during the LOTO procedure, the LOTO audit ensures organizations are undergoing annual audits on each piece of machinery during the LOTO process. A high-quality LOTO Audit app can support businesses as they conduct inspections of their specific LOTO procedures and the knowledge of any authorized people involved. It can also assign corrective actions and manage them until the moment these action items are closed as a means of improving workplace compliance and safety.
Similar to the aforementioned apps, a LOTO Audit app provides a comprehensive checklist that is easily customizable to meet companies' various needs and pain points. It serves as a one-stop solution to assess business' procedural steps for the LOTO of equipment. This solution provides owners and deadlines of specific corrective actions and allow business leaders to track them from start to finish. Additionally, this technology allows workers to generate PDF reports that contain all required elements of the LOTO process to simplify the inspection process.
Machine Guarding Assessment (MGA)
An Machine Guarding Assessment app works primarily to help workers leverage machine guarding as a means of reducing the emergence of workplace injuries, identifying potential risks and coordinating corrective actions on situations that are currently hazardous. By encouraging the employee use of proper guarding, organizations can cut down on overall costs and decrease any down time that may occur as a result of ineffective guarding usage.
Like other EHS apps, an Machine Guarding Assessment offers a configurable checklist that encourages workers, supervisors and managers to evaluation the organization's performance in the areas of compliance and risk mitigation. In addition, it provides transparent access to company procedures, industry standards and OSHA regulations to ensure all machines are being operated with proper guarding provisions.
With a comprehensive suite of EHS tools, your business can actively work to improve its safety regulations from the inside out. When your organization is ready to improve productivity, decrease overhead costs and revamp their workplace culture, be sure to look into an EHS platform that boasts these offerings.