Process safety: using technology to aid good governance.

Process safety: using technology to aid good governance.

Modern day business has many challenges. The continual development of legislation and the constantly evolving commercial and environmental landscape, often across international supply chains, places an ever more demanding requirement on businesses to ensure appropriate protections exist for those with vested interests. Shareholders, through the directors they appoint, must make sure robust and appropriate systems of governance are in place for long-term success. This is at the heart of The UK Corporate Governance Code [1] and inevitably requires collaboration with a wide range of stakeholders.

The global chemical industry’s voluntary Responsible Care® initiative is focused on business being accountable for all its actions, with guiding principles focused on leadership, policy, performance indicators and employee and stakeholder engagement. Continuous improvement in process safety performance is a cornerstone, requiring signatories to accept that:

“Taking account of relevant best practice guidance, we [they] will assess and manage the risks associated with our [their] processes and use process safety leadership and management to minimise major accident potential.” [2]

Signatories recognise that good governance of process safety and the sharing of information with other industry colleagues works in everyone’s best interests. The collective focus on appropriate and effective management systems to control major accident hazards benefits the industry, the UK economy and society at large.

Our new cloud-based software solution, OpenPSM®, has been developed specifically to help operating companies gain tighter control over their own process safety management programmes. Using a state of the art fully relational database, it enables companies large and small to map out their management systems against recognised good practice guidance and conduct deep dive audits and assessments to determine just how well reality matches expectation. Where weaknesses exist, it allows evidence to be gathered and actions to be set and managed to completion. Equally, examples of good practice can be captured and shared across the business. The in-built maturity model also ensures that all necessary steps for progression are encapsulated, ensuring continuous improvement can become a reality rather than an aspiration.

Aligned to the seven principles of Leadership [3], OpenPSM necessarily supports engagement from shopfloor to boardroom, allowing everyone with an active part to play in process safety to have relevant information to hand. The secure database delivers a live snapshot of key risk controls and actions that can be accessed anytime, anywhere, on PCs, tablets, or smartphones.

We believe this is a game changer in terms of delivering cost effective, live reporting on how well the company is delivering against key governing systems and principles.

[1] 2018-UK-Corporate-Governance-Code-FINAL.pdf (frc.org.uk)

[2] RC Guiding Principles 2017.pdf (cia.org.uk)

[3] Seven principles of leadership: Leading health and safety at work (hse.gov.uk)