Column: The importance of Data in Safety Management

Most of you know the value of data in safety management systems. However, a lot of safety management systems mainly show the number of incidents or days without injuries. Yes, they are great for marketing and showing off how great the company is doing, but numbers don’t add much for the company. In order to really start adding value to the company, it is important to analyze the data and find out where important trends are.

Gather the Data

Getting incident data can often be hard to accomplish. Employees don’t always have the right forms at their fingertips and cometimes simply forget about it when they have. Lowering the barrier to file an incident helps a lot to gather sufficient data, even to perform some kind of analysis. Mobile apps are the way to go when it comes to lowering the barriers to file an incident. The employee just needs to take a picture or short video of what happened and the important data is gathered. Then the safety team can start to work on the case.

Individual Cases

No safety incidents are the same. Some require just a couple of hours to resolve, while others might take months or even years, depending on the severity of the injury. Handling every single case thoroughly is important. Even more important is handling certain questions in a structured manner to facilitate comparing results and finding trends.

Call for Help

During the investigation of a case, asking knowledgeable people to help you find the correct information is important. A safety manager won’t necessarily have all the information at their fingertips. Safety managers should make sure they involve different people from different departments to ensure they find the right information. A nice example is the financial effect. The finance department has a much better insight in the costs of an employee per hour.

Read the full column here.

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