Guest Column | March 14, 2017

Everything You Need to Know About EHS Software

Mobile Workforce Management Software

By Jessica Foreman

Environmental, Health, and Safety (EHS) software acts as a database-driven enterprise to help EHS managers handle key components of regulation and compliance. Let’s take a closer look at what EHS software is and what you need to know about it.

What Does EHS Software Do?

EHS software helps EHS managers track incidents, handle risks, waste management, behavioural safety, and more. The sophisticated, real-time analytics tools in software of this kind are very useful, as are the dashboards, graphs, configurable workflows, email notifications (to improve visibility and accountability), and drill-down and export functions.

Most companies with a strong commitment to complying with the health and safety regulations will therefore be using some form of EHS software — it’s often the easiest and most reliable way to manage EHS risks and responsibilities.

What Do People Use If They Don’t Have EHS Software?

If businesses aren’t using EHS software, chances are they’re using Excel and other simple processes to handle their EHS responsibilities instead, something that is not advisable. For one thing, it’s insufficient for the kind of tracking, reporting, and analysis that EHS requires. For another, it makes aspects of EHS management sit in siloes, existing independently from one another when EHS should be considered holistically. If you want to read more about why it’s not a good idea to use Excel for EHS management, check out this article.

How Flexible Is EHS Software?

The level of flexibility in EHS software entirely depends on the supplier you’ve bought it from. For example, Airsweb supplies high quality EHS software allowing businesses to create and modify their own workflows and reports. You can also make use of the templates Airsweb have pre-loaded the software with (the templates are already formatted for industry best-practices) and customize to ensure the software is really working in the way your business needs it to.

Is Centralized Reporting Possible?

Centralized reporting is possible with EHS software, and is one of the key benefits. It allows businesses to gather large amounts of data and do something with it to effect change. For instance, global reports can pull data from multiple applications and locations, and given many forms of EHS software are compatible with third-party reporting tools, it’s a piece of technology that really helps companies drive behavioural change and make time-saving, cost-efficient improvements to their business.

How Effective Is EHS Software At Document Control?

Paperwork is a huge headache in the environmental, health, and safety world with multiple documents and versions of documents floating around on desks, in briefcases, and in cyberspace.

Document control is possible in many forms of EHS software, allowing you to link between documents, track revisions and require signatures, filter by the most-recently updated documents, and automatically disseminate electronic documents if you program it to.

Finally, What Does EHS Software Need To Be Compatible With?

To get the best results from EHS, businesses should have a few other systems in place. For instance, you might need a strong Manufacturing Execution system (MES), a good Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system, and a reliable Eco-Management and Audit Schemes (EMAS) system.

If you don’t have this kind of infrastructure already, you’ll have to flick between systems which defeats the point of having such sophisticated EHS software. If you’re thinking of buying EHS software, make sure you talk to the supplier about the kind of systems you already have in place first.

Jessica Foreman is a Durham University graduate specializing in business and lifestyle based writing. She has developed her skills on projects surrounding The British Broadcasting Company and running a print and online based magazine whilst at university. She is currently looking towards starting her Masters in Mobile and Personal Communications as well as broadening her horizons through traveling.