Businesses grow and at some point you will find yourself trying to find a solution to automate some of the processes that you deal with everyday. EHS(environment, health and safety) is one of the fields that might just benefit from an upgrade using EHS software. When you find yourself looking for EHS software, you are in one of two scenarios. You could be looking for an upgrade if there is already an existing system in place. Or two, you are tasked to head the implementation of an initial implementation. Either way, you are going to need to look at the basics of choosing the right software for your business.
In this article, we will talk about the things you need to consider before buying EHS software.
How to Choose EHS Software for your Business
From my personal experience, finding the right software is not necessarily a one and done job. I have found the right partner for my business after a while but not after a few missteps here and there. Choosing software is a continuing endeavor that does not end at the handover. This is why an internal system should be in place that would be the procedure to be undertaken whenever a new software system is to be bought or if a new process is to be automated.
This is no different when it comes to EHS. Because of the simple vastness of EHS when we talk about the number of personnel affected and the man hours that regularly need to be spent on it, acquiring fresh software can be a recurring need. In the next sections, we will aid you in your search by laying out our own internal process when choosing EHS software.
Choosing EHS Software: Know your Stakeholders
Before setting forth on your quest to find the best EHS software for your business, the first thing that you have to do is to meet all your stakeholders and connect with them. As the ultimate judge of your success or failure to complete the task, the stakeholders should be kept in the loop as much as possible to ensure that they can give quick feedback. EHS is an encompassing endeavor and demands that each member of the company know what exactly is going on. While not everyone needs to say their piece, at the very least they should know the status of the search. The EHS software that you choose could literally save their lives.
Here is a rundown of the stakeholders that you have to face when choosing EHS software.
EHS Software Stakeholder – The EHS team
Most companies, especially in bigger industrial corporations, have designated departments tasked to ensure that the company is compliant to the EHS laws of the state they are located in. Thus, when choosing EHS software, they have to be at the forefront, if not the actual decision maker in choosing the right software. As the ones that are generally expected to be in front of their computers and using the software, they should have a strong voice in the decision process.
Commonly, a member of the one of the EHS departments gets to be in charge of the EHS software procuring processes. The reason for this is obvious of course. But because they may not always have a technical person among their ranks, they would require the help of the office’s IT department.
EHS Software Stakeholder – Section and Department Heads
Safety is a responsibility of everyone and health awareness concerns every worker. Thus, it is imperative to put all leaders in the hook when doing important decisions regarding EHS. The managers’ main concern mostly lies on the effect on productivity on any new aspect introduced to the company. Because of this, it is vital that they approve of the EHS software so they can have an idea of how much man power that will be required of their department.
EHS Software Stakeholder – Technical Team
There are a number of reasons why the IT team have to be involved in introducing any piece of new software in the company infrastructure. The main one is compatibility. Software are becoming more and more flexible in that they are supposed to be able to run on any platform. This is especially true because most software sold nowadays are service based and accessed through web browsers. In conjunction with these kinds of software however is the possible need to set up local servers. This is where the compatibility issues may arise.
The second reason is the resources that the IT service can spare for the new software. The responsiveness of software is a prerequisite to any working application. Once the servers are overloaded with new software that it is not ready for, it could cause operations to halt.
EHS Software Stakeholder – Security Team
Sometimes when we choose software, one of the things that gets put down on the ladder of priorities is security. When we talk about security in choosing EHS software, or any kind of software for that matter, you are hoping that the EHS software you bring is neither a ticking time bomb nor a trojan horse.
Since EHS software normally works with a lot of data, the amount of resources that it will consume could be extremely high. The security team will be concerned if it could potentially bring down other IT services once it is operational.
While it is quite rare for software companies to actually put spyware on the software that they sell, it always pays to be extra careful. The software could have vulnerabilities within them that only technical experts from the security team can sniff out.
EHS Software Stakeholder – Consumers
Finally, the consumers need to be informed regarding any major decision of the company. As a major part of the business, they are considered to be the ultimate stakeholder. While they may not interact directly with the software, they might have an interest in knowing where a significant amount of their investment goes to.