Those two small words have caused big headaches for many safety managers over the years after they’ve been asked to present the bottom-line benefits of safety initiatives to the C-suite or board.
Safety pros know the intrinsic value that Environmental Health & Safety brings to the workforce and the community at large, but being able to prove its worth to a C-level or board-level audience has sometimes proven elusive. Especially in organizations that haven’t seen a major injury or significant environmental event take place for a long time or perhaps ever, it can be challenging for safety leaders to get buy in to get the tools they need to keep their workforce safe, they products sustainable and their operations productive.
As I’ve written in the past, the former CEO of Alcoa achieved significant results after he challenged his company to become the world’s safest. Over a five-year period, the company’s earnings increased 600 percent and sales grew by 15 percent per year.
According to the most recent Liberty Mutual Workplace Safety Index from last year, serious workplace injuries cost U.S. companies almost $60 billion per year alone. The 10 most disabling work-related injuries, such as from overexertion, falls and getting hit by objects, cost employers almost $50 billion.
From a software perspective, part of the challenge has been that the focus of incident management has always been around lagging indicators. Once an event took place, companies could examine what occurred and use that knowledge as a tool to prevent future incidents. Sphera’s Integrated Risk Management product suite includes benchmarking and prescriptive and predictive analytics capabilities that offer safety managers the powerful tools they need to show value to their C-suite and boards.
So when it comes to showing leadership the value, the proof is out there. There’s a word that comes to mind for being able to address potential work-related incidents before they occur: priceless.