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Digital Supply Chain Green Thursday – SAP Environment Health and Safety

Thank you very much for joining us in this article of the Digital Supply Chain Green Thursday blog series. Every Thursday we will together take a closer look at one of the SAP Digital Supply Chain solutions and how they contribute to sustainability in supply chains all over the world. Have fun in following the blog, we invite you to get in touch with us and feel free to share the blog posts among your peers. Here you can find last week’s article about leveraging Industry 4.0 for Sustainability with SAP Manufacturing Solutions.

Sustainability is more than caring about the environment

What is Sustainability for you? What needs to be considered? In the public debate, the climate change and therefore the environmental impact of company’s actions play a huge role. One of the concepts to describe Sustainability is called 3P – Planet, People, Profit. While businesses already have many tools at hand to visualize and predict the economic impact of their business decisions, the environmental and social effects are often less present in the top-management dashboards.

Protect your workforce

Employees are the biggest asset for a company, that’s why many businesses launch amazing campaigns to support, recognize and encourage the contributions of employees. Having Maslow’s hierarchy of needs in mind, those activities are paying into the psychological and self-fulfillment needs at the top of the pyramid. Before employees cherish those, the basic needs must be fulfilled being physiological needs – and safety!

Depending on the specific job description, workers face many risks in their everyday working life. Feeling protected and secure in their working environment, employees are free to work at the best performance.

Use the digital transformation for a holistic EHS approach

How can SAP support businesses to protect their employees the best way possible? Health and Safety are best ensured by a system that is easy to use for all stakeholders, combines all necessary information and enables pro-active strategies to avoid critical situations before they happen. The digital transformation, mobile apps and the ability to process information effective and efficiently are the key to unlock the full potential in Environment, Health and Safety.

Overview on the different modules of the SAP EHS solution; Source: SAP

The SAP Environment, Health and Safety solutions leverage and utilize these chances in a unified platform with a modular approach while being able to also integrate information from other applications to drive intelligent processes and in this way support the Health & Safety practitioners in their everyday work as well as the employees in the operational teams and the transparency up to the top management level.

Combine a proactive approach with reactive capabilities to embed safety

The combinations of the different SAP EHS modules supports processes to actively assess and evaluate risks of an working environment and enacting fitting risk mitigation strategies in as well as the easy reporting of incidents, near misses or safety observations for example by using a mobile App and the follow-up on the maintenance work to resolve the incident and make the working environment safer. Like this, SAP EHS fosters and supports a proactive safety culture throughout the whole company.
Let's take a look onto a few examples of use cases of the SAP EHS solutions:

Based on the risk exposure in the working environment medical services and trainings become necessary for employees to enable a secure way of working. The Health and Safety staff can easily monitor the required trainings and services for each worker in SAP Occupational Health and be reminded, when any new or follow-up procedure is due. After matching this need with the available training and medical resources, the employee can be directly informed about scheduled appointments and can confirm it e.g. via a mobile app.

The SAP EHS features for Chemical Management and Chemical Approval support workflows to correctly assess before putting them in use in a working environment and check whether there is a less dangerous substance that can deliver the same use instead, in order to prevent unchecked hazardous substances to enter the shop floor and to limit the risk through hazardous substances. Once cleared for use, the risk of hazardous substances as well as the fitting risk mitigation strategy consisting of personal protective equipment, the right documentation at the workplace and possibly additional job trainings. Documentation like safety instructions for workplaces can be created right out of the solution.

The processes which are managed in the SAP EHS solution benefit from the integration of HR data e.g. SAP Human Capital Management, as any new employee assigned to a work area is directly registered in the SAP EHS solution and checked against the required trainings and health surveillance protocols required for the respective work area. The integration of SAP Asset Management and SAP Plant Maintenance enable the effective and transparent realization of safety measures or incident resolving actions. This holistic approach ensures that appropriate measurements are taken at all times to keep the employees safe.

Gain transparency on environmental impact

In last week’s article, the role of SAP EHS Environment Management in detailed energy monitoring was already mentioned. The first step in this is the collection of energy and emissions data which can be done leveraging on IoT and providing the data to SAP EHS Environment Management, e.g. with SAP Manufacturing Integration and Intelligence, other data sources or even manual data entries via an easy-to-use web-enabled interface. The data is then verified and checked against missing data entries to ensure that trustworthy data is available and processed. This data is then aggregated to simplify reporting on several topics as for example emissions, that can be calculated using defined equations and emissions criteria. As the software records all activity, full transparency in this process is ensured as well. Environmental actions that are decided based on this process-insights can be scheduled, managed and followed-up through the software as well.

Ensure overall compliance at all times

Staying compliant is as important as it is complex. Auditable and transparent business processes can help businesses to ensure compliance. SAP EHS solutions provide a central legal registry, integrating external content providers to keep business processes updated on regulatory changes. Additionally, internal policies or permits can be source of compliance requirements as well. Defined alerts based on these compliance requirements are checked against the actual process data delivered to the SAP EHS solution. This enables a continuous cross-solution compliance check, setting off alerts proactively whenever there is a risk of exceeding any governmental limits or having other compliance breaches. As regulations can differ from country to country it is important to have a solution as SAP EHS to provide compliance monitoring on different levels as for example plant or company level, checking the collected and aggregated agains the respective compliance requirements.

SAP EHS Compliance Management integrates all information necessary for a consistent compliance monitoring and management across solutions; Source: SAP

Protect Planet and People with SAP Environment Health and Safety

The holistic approach of SAP Environment Health and Safety ensures that safety and effective risk management as well as environmental monitoring is embedded in all operations and that critical environmental and safety information is transparently available to every stakeholder while the modular platform approach allows each business to shape the SAP EHS support to their respective needs.

The SAP EHS solution connects every stakeholder to helpful insights for better decision-making; Source: SAP

For further information reach out to your SAP contact or visit the SAP EHS product page. You can as well check out this episode of the Tom Raftery’s Digital Supply Chain Podcast, where SAP EHS Solution Owner Michael Censurato presents the SAP EHS solution.

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I hope you found this blog post helpful and interesting. Please make sure you follow me to not miss any future blog posts in this series and stay informed about how a Sustainable Supply Chain is supported by SAP Digital Supply Chain solutions! Please have a look at my earlier posts as well:

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