How Streamlining Risk Management Can Create Efficiency
Updated: Aug 16, 2019
Health and safety management processes are often separated from other risk management systems, making it difficult for safety teams to provide context to leadership about potential impacts on workers, customers, partners, and key performance metrics.
Organizations of many sizes and types need to develop more systematic, company-wide methods for assessing, mitigating, monitoring and reporting on health and safety risks. Where health and safety is concerned, the more closely organizational governance (such as policies, procedures and processes) and risk management protocols are tied to compliance work, the more improved all three areas will be.
Streamlining risk management processes enables better decision-making and strategic planning that encompasses the full spectrum of workplace safety. Following are some great ways that creating an integrated risk management program across the enterprise will reduce workplace safety incidents:
Communication and Collaboration As the saying goes, safety is job number one. Communication is key to building a culture where worker well-being is truly a top priority. Bridging gaps between departments and identifying holes in safety protocols is only possible when collaboration is supported with enterprise-wide tools. Gaps can be bridged through: centrally storing key forms and documents; automating and providing escalating process reviews; communicating changes, such as new safety procedures, quickly and efficiently to relevant audiences; and documenting activities for partners, clients, and external agencies that conduct assessments and audits. This all contributes to a more efficient, connected health and safety program: less time is wasted on duplicated efforts and sorting out confusion created by manual processes.
Risk Visibility Without leadership and executive level involvement, health and safety will never be fully integrated into the operational risk portfolio. Incorporating health and safety risks into the overall risk analysis not only increases visibility and impact of health and safety risks to executives, but also increases awareness and fosters a culture of safety at all levels inside and outside the organization. Higher visibility of workforce safety issues at the executive level yields more accountability and encourages all stakeholders to consider health and safety impacts in all aspects of the business.
It is clear that organizations cannot reach a mature, effective level of risk management without incorporating health and safety into their overall operational risk program. It's important to start with a careful, thorough assessment of health and safety management capabilities, data integration, and internal barriers to collaboration. Integrating health and safety risks into operational risk reports to executives will help raise the profile of workplace safety so it is more closely aligned with strategic planning, business objectives, and corporate responsibility initiatives.Comprehensive risk management, integrated with governance and compliance activities, can save the bottom line. More importantly, it can save lives.