5 Principles of a “World-Class” EHS Supply Chain

Author: Joel Mitchell


June 2017 is National Safety Month! Is your supply chain world-class in EHS?

(Let us know what you’re doing to observe National Safety Month by tweeting at us with the hashtag #KeepEachOtherSafe throughout the month of June.)

Recently, the Campbell Institute at the National Safety Council pinpointed “five principles of world-class EHS” that help organizations protect people and preserve the planet, which are both fundamentally integral to business excellence. Let’s talk about the principles the Campbell Institute shared and how you can apply them to your supply chain…

Principle 1: Leadership

Leadership in this case means empowering all within an organization to lead on EHS. You can encourage this by creating a culture of safety within your supply chain with the use of a prequalification process to discover the safest, most qualified suppliers. Go the extra mile by providing the necessary tools to enhance the performance of lower-tiered suppliers. This underscores the value you place on EHS and allows suppliers to take ownership of their development as well. In this way, EHS leadership is cultivated from the inside out.

Principle 2: Integration

Remaining aware of industry standards allows supply chains to integrate and maintain EHS values. Third-party audits are an effective way to ensure suppliers implement documented policies and procedures thereby instilling correct behaviors and building a positive reputation for the way you conduct business.

Principle 3: Data Management

Achieving world-class EHS status is an ongoing journey. Employ a robust analytics system that collects data on both lagging and leading indicators to assist you on your way. This helps provide a glimpse of progress made to date as well as foresee potential EHS risks that may lie ahead. The result will be overall better decision making toward improving production.

Principle 4: Alignment

High-level EHS performance within the supply chain should be as much a priority as cost, quality, ROI, etc. The Campbell Institute suggests aligning your EHS goals with your organization’s overall objectives and strategies. This establishes an environment where everyone takes responsibility for EHS.

Principle 5: Corporate Citizenship

Do your EHS concerns extend beyond the workplace? To become world-class, it should! Consider implementing a corporate social responsibility program and rewarding supply chain contractors for their participation and commitment to off-the-job safety, sustainability, and wellness.

Your supply chain is an extension of your company; and, an emphasis on EHS can go a long way toward managing risk, protecting your brand, and getting a better ROI. Investing in a risk management program can significantly decrease the occurrence of incidents as well as yield a very impressive ROI of up to $4.5 million over a three-year period (OSHA, 2013).

Ready to have a world-class EHS supply chain? Connect with us and learn how we can help!

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