Maya NikolovskiUncategorizedLeave a Comment


We’ve been involved in the design, development and implementation of enterprise- level software for over 20 years, which is why our team of experts put together this 10-part series on evaluating Enterprise-level software. We’ll cover topics ranging from security, data collection and reporting requirements, implementation resources, pricing / cost models and more, to ensure your next enterprise software deployment is a success. You can also download the entire Evaluating Enterprise-level Software whitepaper here

___________________________________

Last week we looked into the how to evaluate your data collection needs & requirements before considering new Enterprise Software. So let’s assume the solution being evaluated meets your data collection needs. Great!

The next step is now to look at how data will be integrated with your current systems.

The lifeblood of any business today is data.

And managing this data can be a huge challenge. Given the specialized nature of most corporate-level software packages, rarely is all the enterprise-level data needed to manage business risk, performance and compliance stored in a single database or even single location. Finance, HR, safety, production, maintenance… etc. All of these departments have their own data and data integration requirements.

When implementing new enterprise level software, integration with the software solutions used to collect, collate, store and report that data is hugely important for any organization.

Whether it is integrating to create enterprise-wide (and multi-data source) performance dashboards, enable Single Sign-On (SSO) to your network environment or linking with HR databases to avoid the time and cost of managing user data in multiple locations, it is very rare these days that an enterprise-level software solution is standalone.

As such, it is virtually essential that any solution you aim to use across your business can integrate with other enterprise software solutions for numerous reasons. Consider the following:

  1. Security: How secure is the data source and the proposed integration? Are industry-leading encryption standards being used? In this age of data breaches, your organization can’t afford to overlook this point.
  2. Reporting: Having data isn’t enough – your organization also needs to be able to leverage this data to make important decisions and report to stakeholders. How easy is it to access reports? Can non-technical managers and staff also access these reports easily?
  3. Overall Efficiency: Is the process of data integration of the enterprise software you’re evaluating straightforward? Will it work with the existing processes of your organization?

See if the enterprise software solution that you’re evaluating is able to checkoff these boxes:

  • Does the solution provide for integration if needed?
  • If you expect to have a large user community (i.e. >100 users), can the solution integrate directly with your HR database, so you don’t have to update user details in both locations as it changes over time?
  • Can the solution accept periodic (even daily or hourly) data uploads (such as HR database updates or checklist dropdown lookup data)?
  • Do you want users to be logged in automatically when authenticated to your corporate network environment and if so, does the solution provide for Single Sign-On (SSO) using an assertion protocol compatible with your infrastructure?
  • Will you need data from the proposed solution to be available in other ERP or business intelligence reporting tools for corporate-level reporting (e.g. executive management, board reports)?
  • Will data from other ERP or corporate databased be needed for reporting in the proposed solution?

 

Next week, we’ll continue our series on evaluating enterprise software by exploring the customizability of your new software.

Ps. if you want access to the full whitepaper today, you can download it here.

Maya NikolovskiAudit software, Behavior based safety, Enterprise software, Inspection management, Quality audits, Quality management, Safety audits, Safety inspection, Safety management, UncategorizedLeave a Comment


We’ve been involved in the design, development and implementation of enterprise- level software for over 20 years, which is why our team of experts put together this 10-part series on evaluating Enterprise-level software. We’ll cover topics ranging from security, data collection and reporting requirements, implementation resources, pricing / cost models and more, to ensure your next enterprise software deployment is a success. You can also download the entire Evaluating Enterprise-level Software whitepaper here

___________________________________

Last week we looked into the various factors you should ask your IT department before considering new Enterprise Software. So let’s assume the solution being evaluated meets the data accessibility, privacy and security requirements of your discerning IT department. 

Now, do the data collection capabilities meet the needs of your users throughout your business?

The larger a business, the more likely they are to be multinational, multilingual and – by nature – diverse. Similarly, the larger a business, the more likely it is that there will be a need for multiple data input options (e.g. browser, app, paper) to meet differing needs, constraints or limitations across the business and its user base. Don’t automatically assume that all users will have the same technology. 

For example: 

  • Some users may not have a company cell phone or device they can use for work.
  • Some users may have connectivity issues (e.g. poor or no cell coverage, no Wi-Fi connectivity, limited or no internet access). 
  • Some users may face safety or security constraints (i.e. can’t use cell phones due to risk of explosion, cleanrooms, etc.).

As such, an enterprise-level solution (especially one for activities like field audits and mobile inspections) should provide for as many data input options as needed to meet the constraints/limitations of your business and all users needing to collect, manage and report data.

Enterprise level data entry options to consider

Evaluating your data collection needs and requirements: 

  1. Does the solution provide for all the data collection needs of your users?
  2. Do all users have smartphones or devices (and are they willing/able to use them for work-related activities) and if not, what other data collection options are available? 
  3. Are there areas in your business where mobile devices cannot be used (e.g. cleanrooms, explosive environments)?
  4. Do people work in the field and possibly in areas without cell, Wi-Fi or internet connectivity? This doesn’t just apply to remote workers – even in urban areas, workers who are underground, or in enclosed concrete spaces without windows can also experience a lack of connectivity. 
  5. Is the solution’s app (for mobile use on smartphones and devices) readily available from primary app sources (i.e. iTunes, Google Play)?
  6. Is there an additional cost to download  or use the solution’s app? Furthermore, is there an additional cost per user? 
  7. Is there a browser-based data entry option for laptops, PC’s and internet-connected devices?
  8. Will the operating systems of your users’ devices (i.e. iOS, Android, Windows) be compatible with the solution’s app? 
  9. Is there a need for printable, paper-based data entry using scan-to-email in areas without connectivity and/or where it is impractical to use devices, laptops, and PCs?
  10. Do you have complex data input requirements that would be better met with Excel import features?

Next week, we’ll continue our series on evaluating enterprise software by exploring the integration requirements of your new software. 

Ps. if you want access to the full whitepaper today, you can download it here.

Maya NikolovskiAudit software, Certainty software, EHS Software, Enterprise software, Inspection management, Quality audits, Safety audits, Safety management, UncategorizedLeave a Comment


We’ve been involved in the design, development and implementation of enterprise- level software for over 20 years, which is why our team of experts put together this 10-part series on evaluating Enterprise-level software. We’ll cover topics ranging from security, data collection and reporting requirements, implementation resources, pricing / cost models and more, to ensure your next enterprise software deployment is a success. You can also download the entire Evaluating Enterprise-level Software whitepaper here

________________________________

All enterprise-wide software projects are led, managed or at the very least approved (or denied) by your company’s IT department. So, don’t waste time evaluating a solution the IT department would never approve. First make sure the solution will meet the data access, privacy and security needs of your business and your business’s IT gatekeepers and guardians! 

If your company is considering deploying cloud-based software – SaaS or otherwise – there are a number of items that should be considered by your IT team as the first step to evaluation. 

Here are the top 16 factors you’ll want your IT department to consider: 

  1. Will the software vendor be able to meet the technical due diligence requirements of your own IT department? Each IT department’s requirements will differ, but departmental standards should always be upheld.
  2. Does your company have an IT security risk assessment questionnaire, and will the solution meet those requirements (e.g. vulnerability, recoverability, data protection, virus & malware protection, intrusion detection, etc.)
  3. Different industries have different regulations. Do their hosting and data security practices meet the data security requirements of your own business and IT department?
  4. Does the solution provider conduct (and can they provide evidence of) regular vulnerability and penetration assessments on their own software and server environments (i.e. both web interface and network infrastructure)?
  5. Is accessibility protected against distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks? Make sure you’re protecting your business from downtime and potential lost revenue.
  6. Does the hosting environment have redundant firewalls to protect against malware and intrusion?
  7. Do their backups (and schedules), redundancy and disaster recovery practices meet the standards required by your own business’s IT department?
  8. Do you know where (and in what legal jurisdiction) your data is stored and does that meet the data storage requirements of your business? In some industries – for example, governmental organizations – this is extremely important.
  9. Is the solution hosted with a third party and if so, are they reputable and do they meet the needs of your IT department and business?
  10. Do you know who has access to your data? Is it only the service provider or is it also employees and third parties?
  11. Are service provider employees that have access to your data vetted and are they bound by a Code of Ethics and non-disclosure agreements?
  12. Is your company’s data stored completely separately from that of other clients’ data and if not, what protections are in place to ensure data privacy?
  13. Is the solution (and provider) compliant with the latest international data privacy regulations such as the EU’s General Data Protection Regulations or Canada’s PIPEDA? This is important to ask if you want to avoid huge fines and remain compliant.
  14. Will the service level (uptime) meet the needs of your business and does the provider have a software service level agreement (SLA) for review by your legal team?
  15. Has the database been designed for scalability? Make sure your software can grow with your business.
  16. Does the provider have – and can they readily provide copies of – their own data security policies and procedures including:
    • Antivirus Policy Code of Ethics
    • Cross Border Personal Data Transfer Procedure
    • Data Protection Policy;
    • Data Protection and Audit Polity
    • Data Subject Access Request Procedure
    • Employee Code of Conduct
    • IT Disaster Recovery and Service Continuity Plan Security Incident Response Procedures
    • Media Sanitation & Destruction Policy

Only after these questions have been addressed can your organization move on to the next step of enterprise software deployment:  evaluation your data collection requirements. 

In the next article of our series on Evaluating Enterprise Software we’ll look at just that.

Ps. if you want access to the full whitepaper today, you can download it here

 

Hewitt RobertsAudit software, Certainty software, EHS Software, Safety data, Safety inspection, Safety managementLeave a Comment


Certainty Software Named as Rising Star!

Certainty Software has been named a Rising Star in the Environmental, Health, & Safety category for the Spring 2019 Customer Success Report published by FeaturedCustomers.

Certainty Software named as Rising Star

Certainty Software named as Rising Star by Featured Customers!

FeaturedCustomers is the leading customer success content marketing platform for B2B business software & services helping potential B2B buyers make informed purchasing decisions through vendor validated customer success content such as customer testimonials, success stories, case studies, and customer videos.

FeaturedCustomers evaluated all the potential Environmental, Health, & Safety companies on its platform for possible inclusion in the report. Only 14 companies meet the criteria needed for being included in the Spring 2019 Environmental, Health, & Safety Customer Success Report. Certainty Software received a Rising Star award in the category.

Rising Star – have been around long enough to establish momentum and a minimum amount of customer reference content along with a growing social presence. Highly rated by customers, Certainty Software consistently publishes high quality vendor produced customer success content and curate’s quality customer reviews from multiple third-party sites.

The Customer Success Report is based on the curation of authenticated case studies, testimonials, and reviews from across the web, telling a complete story of vendors in the Environmental, Health, & Safety space through real customer experiences. Scores are determined by multiple factors including number of total reviews, customer success content, social media presence, and vendor momentum based on web traffic and search trends.

The full report, along with Certainty Software’s profile, which includes detailed product scorecards is available for you to download here:

https://www.featuredcustomers.com/vendor/certainty-software

Hewitt RobertsCertainty software, EHS Software, Safety data, UncategorizedLeave a Comment


Register now for one of our free webinars.

 

Certainty Software BI Dashboard

Get the most out of Business Intelligence reporting with Certainty!

The latest release of Certainty Software includes a new Business Intelligence reporting tool. Based on Microsoft’s PowerBI technology, this tool is one of the world’s most powerful enterprise-level dashboard reporting tools available.

To help you and your team take advantage of this powerful new reporting tool, throughout April we are offering a number of Basic and Advanced training sessions.

The Basic session (30 mins) covers using the new BI tool in your instance of Certainty, using BI dashboards and graphs, filtering and exporting data.

The Advanced session (30 mins) covers using the Microsoft PowerBI Desktop tools to connect to new data sources, creating and/or customizing your BI dashboards and publishing new dashboards to your instance of Certainty Software.

Register now!

 

Basic BI reporting with Certainty - webinar registration April 17

Basic BI reporting with Certainty - webinar registration April 24

Advanced BI reporting with Certainty - webinar registration April 18

Advanced BI reporting with Certainty - webinar registration April 25

 

 

Alex EckartBehavior based safety, Certainty software, Safety observation, UncategorizedLeave a Comment


The corporate world is full of business improvement programs. Sometimes their adoption is a must to survive in a competitive industry or market, other times they are a passing phase better avoided. Good or bad, essential or avoidable, business improvement programs will undoubtedly have both pros and cons and behavior based safety (BBS) is no different.

 

If implemented correctly – with sufficient leadership commitment, a BBS program will definitely improve safety, morale and productivity. However, as is the case with all enterprise -level initiatives, there are both pros and cons to be considered – BBS is no different. Here are some of the pros and cons to consider for the successful implementation of a BBS program:

Con: Observations can get lost in the weeds. Management can become too focused on observations, thinking that a large amount of worker monitoring is the key. The truth is that observations are only a piece of the puzzle – what’s more important is how this data is used to change the safety behavior of a company.

Con: BBS takes attention away from technical and engineering improvements to safety. This is only if management thinks a behavior based approach to safety is all that they need. In truth, a BBS program is best paired with a variety of safety initiatives.

Con: These programs make it very easy for management to “blame the worker”. Because these programs focus on the behaviors of workers, it’s an easy place for management to place the blame. A good safety leader would recognize that their employee’s decisions are based on the training, incentives, and environment that management may (or may not) have provided.

Pro: BBS is an opportunity to create a positively reinforced safety program. A common mistake of safety professionals is to focus only on correcting unsafe behaviors, assuming that’s the only approach to eliminating workplace accidents. BBS programs are intended to also identify safe behaviors, reward those doing them and promote exemplary behavior.

Pro: Technology can take safety to a new level. Because BBS aims for a holistic approach to safety, it’s important to collect all your observations and data under one umbrella. This will allow safety professionals to notice unsafe trends and see the results of their safety initiatives.

Pro: Behavior Based Safety brings the workers who are most likely to have an accident to the conversation about safety. It’s an opportunity for everyone to contribute their ideas about safety. An effective BBS program has 100% employee buy-in. A shared responsibility towards safety is the only way to deliver lasting and beneficial results.

Like any business improvement program, from a ‘certifiable management system’ to a ‘change management program’, the implementation of any corporate performance improvement program will require commitment and resources; will have supporters and detractors; and will have pros and cons.

In all cases though, when it comes to programs that involve people (i.e. a BBS program), you get out what you put in. Success will be dependent on the commitment provided by leadership to the program, its outcomes and those involved in it.

Hewitt RobertsAudit software, Behavior based safety, Certainty software, EHS Software, Inspection management, Loss prevention audit, Quality audits, Safety inspectionLeave a Comment


Thrilled to announce Certainty Software version 1.7 is ready for release!

 

Overview of what’s in the release:

 

  • Business Intelligence drill through metrics reporting
    Certainty Software

    Certainty Software Version 1.7 Ready for Release!

  • Add actions ‘on-the-fly’
  • Dashboard – ‘Previous Day’, ‘Previous Month’ and ‘Previous Year’ parameter settings
  • ‘Save as’ feature for System & Custom Reports
  • Checklist ‘Preview’ in Checklist Builder
  • Time zone stamps on System & Custom Reports
  • Multi-lingual System & Custom Reports
  • Define number of checklists to show per page in app/.mobi
  • Allow .com user to administer both .com and .mobi access
  • Various bug fixes and performance enhancements

Hewitt RobertsAudit software, Behavior based safety, EHS Software, Inspection management, Loss prevention audit, Quality audits, Quality management, Safety data, Safety inspection, Safety management, Safety observationLeave a Comment


Super excited about the release of the new BI dashboard reporting tool! Dynamic, roll-up, drill through and super powerful!! Ready for launch in our 1.7 release being rolled out now!

Alex EckartBehavior based safety, EHS Software, Safety inspection, Safety management, Safety observation2 Comments


5 Tips for a Better BBS Program

5 Tips for a Better BBS Program

Behavior Based Safety (BBS) is a process centered around the one thing that will never be excluded from workplace safety incidents – people. Behavior Based Safety focuses people’s attention and actions on the daily safety behavior of themselves and those around them. It is the goal of any BBS program to observe what people do, but more importantly, why they do it. Here are 5 key elements to make your BBS program succeed:

  1. 100% Buy-in – Everyone Has Got to be on Board. The entire workplace needs to be trained in two major areas. First, they need to know how to observe behaviors and find unsafe actions. Then they need to learn to communicate these observations in a non-confrontational way.
  1. Support Your Program with the Right Technology. No matter the scale, a corporate-wide safety initiative needs to be backed by the right tech. Finding the software is easy, but it’s important to have your entire workforce trained.
  1. Measure the Cause, Not Just the Symptoms. Many safety programs are only measured on performance. A Behavior Based Safety Program can find the underlying motives behind potentially unsafe actions and therefore move to reduce or eliminate them completely.
  1. Create Safety Leaders, not Safety Managers: Behavior Based Safety Programs rely on the initiative of every employee, no matter where they are on the corporate ladder, to contribute their ideas and become safety self-accountable.
  1. Observations are only half the battle. Any well-rounded BBS program identifies which actions are most likely to lead to unsafe situations and finds an effective way to encourage safer behaviors through incentives, training and initiatives.

With these key elements in mind, you’re on your way to establishing a behavior-focused safety program. Seeing the results will take time, but the changes from these programs can have a very positive and long-lasting effect.

 

Try our BBS checklist for free.

Alex EckartBehavior based safety, EHS Software, Safety inspection, Safety observationLeave a Comment


Behavior Based Safety (BBS) is a safety management discipline based on the premise that a worker’s behavior is the root cause of many, if not most, workplace incidents and injuries. BBS involves observing employees in the workplace and attempts to influence safer behavior through coaching and educating employees to make safer decisions about their actions.

Typically, a BBS program:Behavior based safety observation

  1. Involves safety personnel – and other employees – observing the workplace activities of workers to identify unsafe behaviors and any actions that may lead to unsafe outcomes;
  2. Aims to understand what is causing the unsafe behaviors;
  3. Implements training, awareness and incentives to eliminate the causes of unsafe behaviors and ultimately replace unsafe behaviors with safe ones.

If done effectively, a BBS program can have long-lasting and extraordinarily positive effects on the safety performance of a company and its employees.

Try our BBS checklist for free.