Global Vs Local
You are a large company with operations spread all over the world. Different countries, regulations, cultures and languages. You probably have a mix of software systems to record EHS incidents, and it all hangs together with some central reporting hinged on a complex Excel sheet. Sound familiar? Don’t worry, you are not alone, and in truth most companies are just like yours.
Reporting to the senior management is a slow administrative nightmare, and you know that some data is always missing, is late or gets fudged - but it’s always been that way. Right!
“It ain’t broke so don't fix it”
A fine approach but that can only get you so far. It has worked for a few years, but it’s bound to collapse in the end. Imagine if your EHS team were not there to hold this ad hoc system together! It’s a house of cards that can collapse at any moment and you know the boss will be screaming “why did this not get fixed years ago” when the crisis finally occurs. Like the financial crisis, the bill to clean up the mess is always more than the bill to fix the system and prevent the crisis.
We know that getting everybody in your company to align under “one global incident system” is very difficult and can almost feel impossible. So….. what do you do? How many people need to get involved and how can you decide with so many different chiefs?
In truth, at Emex, we don’t have all the answers. It is your company and only you can really understand the politics and the process of making this decision. All we know is that you need to make this decision, and the sooner your make it, the less it will cost your company and its staff in the end. Don’t wait for the crisis, and be forced to respond. Be proactive, and not reactive. Companies need an organised and rapid way of recording, responding and sharing the learning from incidents, and a Global Software System is the only way that we can see this being achieved.
The benefits of one Global Incident Reporting System are many, and are a little different for each company. Some of the reasons seem to be very obvious but there are worth repeating. Incidents affect a company in many ways ranging from financial to reputational, and the effect on staff is also very significant. You have to got to ask if the staff at Volkswagen are putting in the same effort this week, now that their company has been exposed as a cheat. Why work hard to make your company better, if your boss is going to blow billions on a scandal or accident. Speed and transparency of information are some of the big wins as we see them. Your company will instantly know about every incident, everywhere in the world and all of the time. The data is live, and the response and learning can also be live. With information entered directly into a software system, reporting is instant. Speed of information and response are vital tools of modern business, and only software systems like Emex can deliver this for you.
Local resistance to a global system from HQ is a pretty common feature of a roll out, and the localisation powers of enterprise software are the key to solving this. We often localise the incident process in each country, region or division delivering what we hope is a local v HQ balance.
The pro’s of an overall corporate system EHS software system have to far outweigh the con’s of motivating the company to change and pushing it into action. If you are part of the EHS Head Office team, we think it’s part of your responsibility to lead this change. You may feel swamped by incidents and reports, and the solution to this workload is to systemise the process with Emex, rather than plough on with the status quo.
We know from past experience that this system will free you up to add real value to your company releasing you from bureaucracy and into action. Once a company has globalised into one system, they will never return to the fragmented solutions of ad hoc system. That fact alone must be the proof if any more is needed.