International mining houses need robust environment, health and safety (EHS) software that can accommodate their organization’s broad and diverse requirements, software that is by definition enterprise-class.
But what does that mean? Beyond the obvious need for stability and performance with large user and transaction volumes, there are six other criteria that need to be closely analysed when selecting your preferred product.
1. Configurability at site/region level
It’s taxing managing the myriad region-specific requirements mining houses have to meet these days. And then there are the requirements based on what commodity is being mined, and how it is being mined: open cast,underground, or marine.
The EHS software you choose needs to allow you to hide or show fields, tabs, reports and process flows based on asset and site-level requirements. This cannot be at the expense of standardization and meaningful corporate reporting. Also, look for software that builds these region-, asset- or site-specific enhancements around a common core – it must have fields and processes that all assets can complete and adhere to.
2. Integrated risk management
You want the EHS management system you choose to facilitate proper understanding and control of risk across different risk disciplines. That’s the whole point.
So look for a system that has been designed from the get-go with interconnectedness in mind and that can provide insights into the associations across different risk disciplines.
Want some pointers? The interrelated nature of risk is clearly described in this blog byMichael Rasmussen, an internationally recognised expert on GRC management and compliance. Ramussen says GRC management requires a federated approach to managing risk, one that is “integrated and collaborative”. These links are also important for the potential success of predictive analytics. And there is also the flip side of risk: the uncovering of opportunity. An integrated view of risks usually exposes areas of potential opportunity, as the business is able to analyse the potential consequences across silos. It’s really a no-brainer.
Users will use a system better and enter more accurate information if they are able to do so in their home language. Modern tools such as Google Translate or Azure’s Translator allow for the real-time (and ever-improving) translation of text into many different languages, allowing users’ descriptions of events and the other information they enter into the systerm to be automatically translated into the company’s principal language.
4. Ease of integration
EHS software has evolved from many disparate points. Look for software that allows platforms to pass and receive data from other systems (human resources, enterprise resource planning and other operational systems) and from the Internet of Things devices, data lakes, wearables and other platforms.
You’re on a quest for software with application programming interfaces – APIs – and connectors that facilitate this data flow, creating a broad, data-centric ecosystem. That’s enterprise class.
The evolution of EHS software has been from disparate point solutions to integrated platforms. The evolution will extend into a broader ecosystem in which EHS platforms pass and receive data to and from other systems (HR, ERP and other operational systems), IoT devices, data lakes, wearables etc. Enterprise-class EHS systems need APIs and connectors that facilitate this flow of data, creating a broad, data-centric ecosystem.
5. Data analytics
Software that allows you to understand data visually is a given, but true enterprise EHS software provides the ability to present associations across data, including data coming from other systems.
Overlaying training attendance with near misses, for example, can highlight potential leading indicators. Integrating data with spatial platforms also provides the ability to present data more powerfully, for example, showing you the correlation between safety and productivity at different shafts and levels Or the association between environmental impacts and social grievances.
To prevent harm it is crucial that critical controls are closely monitored. Visualising leading indicators from a broad array of data better equips your company to respond to developing trends regarding the potential materialization of risk.
6. External users
These days software needs to allow data from contractors, vendors and others suppliers to flow into the system readily.
Supplier vetting, certification, induction and processing all have to be offered in a manner that is easy, streamlined and not dependent on complex training programmes.
EHS systems have evolved within mining companies over the past decade from isolated point solutions to programmes that are used to manage the company’s risk around its licence to operate.
he ever-growing importance of EHS and ESG means it is imperative to put in place an enterprise-ready system that reduces risk and increases efficiency.
ESG factors influence investment decisions. They are integral to assessing the ability of an organisation to manage fundamental inherent risks, all while business carries on.
They provide evidence of how an organisation creates long-term sustainable value, and the impact it has on business, society, and the environment. Positive impacts will validate its license to operate.
Interested in how other global mining companies are using technology to drive greater EHS and sustainability performance? Download our latest Mining Report to learn more: