Why A Safety Management System Is Critical To Your Business?
When organized, developed, executed, and assessed in a systematic way, workplace safety and occupational health programs can produce impactful and sustainable business outcomes that go beyond injury and illness prevention and regulatory compliance.
A “Safety Management System” (SMS) is simply a framework that includes these programmatic steps and emphasizes key attributes of a company’s workplace safety program.
As an organization-wide approach to managing safety and health, an effective SMS does not exist in isolation; but is in fact designed to coexist and operate in unison with an organization’s overarching management system. It is that symbiotic relationship that helps lead businesses to operational excellence.
Several SMS frameworks exist within the international safety and health industry (e.g., ISO 45001, ANSI Z10, API RP 75, etc.), each with unique characteristics and attributes that could make them a good fit for your organization. With that said, the fundamentals of every framework require emphasis and inclusion of:
Management leadership and commitment
Risk management through worksite analysis, hazard prevention and control
Safety and health programs, policies, processes, and procedures
Programmatic assurance through management review and corrective actions
Without much effort, you can envision each of these attributes and the extent and effectiveness to which they exist independently or interdependently within your organization. It is a formal, top-down articulation that stitches these disparate elements together to form an SMS framework.
Ultimately, the importance is less on picking the “right one” as much as it is identifying the fundamental need for an SMS and strategically developing the one that best fits your operations and achieves your desired outcomes.
When deciding on what safety management system to implement, there are a few key factors to consider:
Determine your organization's unique safety and health risks and objectives.
Evaluate different safety management system frameworks that align with your organization's needs and goals.
Assess the resources and budget that can be allocated to implementing and maintaining a safety management system.
Involve employees in the process to ensure buy-in and participation in the implementation process.
Set clear goals and performance metrics to measure the effectiveness of the safety management system.
Regularly evaluate the system's performance, adapt it as needed, and continuously improve your safety and health programs.
If you're looking for guidance in implementing a safety management system that meets your organization's needs and objectives, we encourage you to consider working with a trusted safety and health consultant like Shirley Parsons. We can help you evaluate different SMS frameworks, bring in expert talent, set clear objectives, and regularly evaluate the system's performance. Remember, a strong commitment to safety and health from management is key factors in any successful SMS implementation. Contact us today to learn more by filling out the form below.