No Budget No Problem: Three Digital EHS Projects That Will Pique Cross Practice Interest And Support

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No Budget No Problem: Three Digital EHS Projects That Will Pique Cross Practice Interest And Support

The recent Verdantix global corporate survey of EHS leaders revealed that 77% of firms expect an increase (over inflation) in EHS spend over the next 12 months. This can be attributed to a host of market factors, such as corporate focus on digitization for business resilience or the growing understanding of EHS functions’ role in driving success across the organization. Although this is a positive step, EHS digital development is not cheap. To secure necessary funding for widespread projects, EHS leaders must build a robust business case and navigate old-hat budget holders that view EHS as a cost centre (see Verdantix The Business Case For EHS Software). Demonstrating the value of EHS investment across various stakeholder groups is vital to building a compelling case for change. Verdantix has witnessed three types of EHS projects that attract support across the business:

  • Environmental platforms for ESG data collection. Over the last three years, large corporates have – with varying success – looked to roll out digital ecosystems to collect, aggregate and report on ESG and sustainability data. Leveraging existing expertise, vendors from EHS backgrounds have been among the frontrunners in developing ESG reporting solutions (see Verdantix Green Quadrant: ESG Reporting And Data Management Software). When looking to digitize environmental management processes, EHS leaders must play to the clear functional synergies between EHS and ESG to initiate cross practice digitization initiatives, posing an attractive business case for executives (see Verdantix Strategic Focus: ESG Reporting Will Force Firms To Consolidate Legacy EHS IT Systems).
  • Control of work for operational efficiency. Although vital to operations, safety procedures, such as the permit to work processes, are often the rate-limiting factor for productivity. Successfully implementing digital control of work tools goes far to streamline the permit procedure, in addition to providing functionality to improve safety (see Verdantix Buyer’s Guide: Control of Work Software Applications). Take energy firm Suncor, which rolled out the Enablon control of work tool. Implementing the solution allowed the standardization of hazard control processes, centralization of risk information and notable boosts to uptime – all making it an investment option that operations leaders would champion
  • Contractor management solutions. Without the same level of safety control that can be applied to full-time employees, using contractors for operations inherently increases a firm’s liability risk. The Deepwater Horizon disaster exemplifies this – while third party firm Transocean managed the rig, procedural lead BP incurred the vast majority of the $62 billion liability cost. Contractor management vendors such as Avetta, ISN and Veriforce have developed robust suites of digital tools to assist with vetting, training and on-site safety management of contractors (see Verdantix Buyer’s Guide 2021: Contractor Safety Management Software). Such offerings are able to support the various teams – procurement, operations, site managers, health and safety – that interact with third parties throughout the contractor life cycle. 

Tom Brown

Senior Analyst

Tom is a Senior Analyst in the Verdantix EHS practice. His current research agenda focuses on a range of EHS topics, including high-risk safety controls, contractor management, environmental services and EHS digitization strategy. Prior to joining Verdantix, Tom achieved a Master’s in Chemical Engineering from the University of Nottingham.