Hewitt RobertsBehavior based safety, Construction safety, EHS Software, Inspection management, Safety audits, Safety data, Safety inspection, Safety management, Safety observation, UncategorizedLeave a Comment


In this blog series we’ll be looking at safety in the construction industry. Construction is one of the most danger-prone industries there is – responsible for approximately 1 in 5 workplace fatalities. How can construction companies successfully create a safety program and achieve buy in? We’ve spoken with industry professionals Steve Mellard, National Safety Director at Anning Johnson and Desire’e Ropel, Safety Manager at Hermanson to get an insider look into how to manage safety in the construction industry.

Construction safety briefing

Construction Industry Safety Importance

 The construction industry poses unique health and safety challenges. In fact, 1 out of every 5 workplace deaths were in the construction. Luckily health and safety processes play a vital role in minimizing risks. And while the construction industry is heavily regulated (see OSHA & CFCSA), having a safety program in place to make sure these processes are being followed is a major challenge for the industry as a whole.

Here are 4 issues to consider when looking to improve safety on construction jobsites.

  1. Create a Safety-First Workplace Culture

Having a safety-first work culture is one of the top ways that construction companies can keep workers safe on the jobsite. And while your own company culture can be strong and safety-oriented, new workers may not share the same values. Getting personnel from other companies and cultures comes with unique challenges: old-school values and cutting corners may be the norm for some employees who don’t yet understand the importance of “doing it right”.

  1. Provide Consistent and Regular Safety Training

Desire’e Ropel, Safety Manager at Hermanson, points to consistency of training as a key factor to a successful safety program. Even when a safety item may seem like common knowledge, consistent training and reinforcement from top-level management is crucial to make sure that safety procedures are top of mind.

  1. Have Realistic Budgets and Deadlines

Construction companies are constantly under pressure to meet project deadlines on time and in budget – it’s the nature of the business. However, when budgets and schedules are tight – or tighter than you expected – it is often safety that takes the hit when working under pressure. Safety often takes a back seat in the minds of front-line managers and workers when racing against the clock. Just as you wouldn’t speed through a crowded school zone because you are late going somewhere, giving safety management the short shift because a project is running over schedule could end in disaster. Given the nature and number of  hazards on a job-site, even the slightest oversight can be catastrophic.

  1. Consider “The Human Factor”

Steve Mellard from Anning Johnson cites the “human factor” as one of the key factors to consider when thinking safety as it contributes to – or is associated with – almost all incidents. Employees can make poor choices knowing full well that their actions could be detrimental to their safety – and/or the safety of others. This is why a safety-first workplace culture which reinforces training and rewards safety over risk and time-saved is so important.

Instead of facing potential legal action, fines, and lost productivity, the construction industry should work to ensure they are not falling short when it comes to safety.

In the next blog in our series on construction safety, we’ll cover what a construction safety program must include to be effective.

Next blogs in this series:

  • What Must A Construction Safety Program Include to Be Effective?
  • How Leadership Style Affects Safety Performance in Construction
  • Improving Employee Buy-In & Participation in Your Safety Management Program
  • 5 Significant Safety Issues Facing the Construction Industry
  • #1 Safety Issue in Construction As Told By Top Safety Management Industry Leaders
  • How Has Technology Changed Construction Safety?
  • The Future of Construction Safety – Looking to 2025

Hewitt RobertsCOVID-19 Checklist, Inspection management, Safety inspection, Uncategorized1 Comment


Our thoughts go out to all those impacted by the COVID-19 virus worldwide. These are challenging times for all and in an attempt to help our clients and colleagues we have recently published 2 checklists that might help businesses and their employees both prepare for but also manage through an crisis / pandemic outbreak such as with COVID-19 now.

The checklists are:

COVID-19 Crisis / Pandemic Preparedness Checklist for Business

COVID-19 Crisis / Pandemic Outbreak Management and Response Checklist

The first is to help business prepare for a crisis / pandemic such as COVID-19 and the second is aimed at helping business (particularly in ‘public-facing’ office, retail, hospitality or food services settings) reduce the health and safety risk to employees and visitors to a business (customers, clients, etc.).

The checklists can be downloaded in Excel free of charge.

Stay safe in these difficult times!

Hewitt RobertsAudit software, Behavior based safety, Certainty software, EHS Software, Inspection management, Safety inspection, Safety observation, UncategorizedLeave a Comment


New Certainty App!That’s right we’ve just published a brand new version of the Certainty app! Completely rebuilt with Google’s new Flutter Framework technology for mobile app development, this version includes all the features of the earlier Certainty app but:

  • is faster;
  • has easier ‘swipe’ navigation;
  • is easier to use; and,
  • auto saves as you complete checklists!

The move to this new technology also opens up a range of super exciting features that we will steadily roll into the app moving forward! These include:

  • reporting;
  • action management;
  • scheduling;
  • reminders and push notifications; and,
  • countless new answer types such as a bar code reader and map/GPS coordinates!

Maya NikolovskiAudit software, Enterprise software, Inspection management, Safety audits, Safety inspection, 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

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Last week we looked at the importance of having a centralized location for software administration. Does the solution you’re evaluating meet this requirement? Let’s move on to the implementation process, and the resources that the provider has to ensure a successful and smooth implementation. 

If a well managed project with clear objectives is a key drivers of project success, then a close second would be a good start to the process itself. Nothing like hitting the ground running.

Just as projects without good leadership and clear objectives will most likely fail, projects that are not implemented well will likely struggle to meet your needs and eventually wither.

So, when considering an enterprise-level solution, ensure that the solution provider has a track record for implementing enterprise-level projects and can offer all the training, tools and support (i.e. onboarding procedures, data upload templates, project reviews) needed to ensure your project will be a success from day one.

Some things to consider:

  • Does the solution provider offer support for initial project implementation and configuration? Is technical support provided (free of charge) and can you submit support requests 24/7?
  • What onboarding / project implementation resources are available (e.g. onboarding procedures and/or implementation guides, training material, initial data upload templates)?
  • What support is offered by the solution provider (e.g. training, configuration, customization)?
  • Does the solution provider offer ‘test’ or ‘sandbox’ environments for initial roll out testing, new releases, user-testing, etc.?

Next week, we’ll concluding our series on evaluating enterprise software by exploring the pricing and cost model of the solution. 

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

 

Maya NikolovskiAudit software, Behavior based safety, Certainty software, EHS Software, Enterprise software, Inspection management, Loss prevention audit, Quality audits, Safety audits, Safety inspection, 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 at the importance of customization before considering new enterprise software. Does the solution meet your customization requirements? Let’s move on to the importance of multi-purpose software for your organization. 

_________________

There are many enterprise-level software solutions that have been designed for a single use activity or discipline and will only ever be used for that activity in your business. HR software and financial accounting software are typical examples. 

In these cases, regardless of the people or currencies involved, the processes – and software used to manage them – remains the same across your business. There is likely no applicability for HR or financial accounting software outside of the HR and Finance Departments.

This, however, is not the case for many other enterprise-level solutions.  When considering a solution to solve your team’s (or department’s) problem, you should consider giving it the best chance of buy-in, support and long-term success. Accomplish this by choosing a tool that can easily be configured for your workflow and problem but that can also meet the needs of other teams and departments with similar workflows and problems.

Enterprise-level solutions for assessing, reporting and managing compliance, risk or performance are a great example. The audit and inspection protocols and checklists may change depending on the discipline involved, but the process and workflow is essentially the same.

 You assess compliance, risk or performance against a set of predetermined questions or protocols and rectify/resolve/manage issues and non-conformances identified. The only thing that really changes is the questions and checklists themselves.

As such, when assessing the viability of a software solution to meet the needs of a discipline or department in your business, improve the probability of long-term success by ensuring that the solution you are considering will work for others like you across your business.

If, for example you are looking for an enterprise-level audit and inspection management solution to improve risk, compliance and performance, make sure the solution will work for all of the audits and inspections needs of your business including:

  • Safety Audits (jobsite safety, behavioral based safety, food safety, etc.)
  • Incident Reporting & Investigations
  • Quality Assurance and Control Audits
  • Environmental and Sustainability Audits
  • Supply Chain Compliance Audits
  • Process Control Inspections
  • Cleaning, Inspection and Lubrication (CIL) Inspections
  • Facility and Maintenance Inspections
  • Vehicle and Equipment Inspections
  • Loss Prevention Audits
  • Certification (ISO, GMP, etc.) Audits
  • Risk Assessments
  • Etc…

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

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, 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!

Hewitt RobertsAudit software, EHS Software, Inspection management, Quality audits, Quality managementLeave a Comment


Quality audit data collection

Certainty helped Rocky Brands reduce data collection, management and reporting time by 70%

Rocky Brands Inc. is a global leader in apparel and footwear manufacturing and until recently collected their Quality Assurance (QA), Layered Process (LPA), Verification and Lean Manufacturing audit data by hand. Their audit results were then manually keyed into Excel to produce the Quality Management reports and charts needed.

Rocky Brands began using Certainty in an effort to improve their auditing activities and were able to reduce – by 70% – the hours needed for their quality audit data collection, collating and reporting. They now have real-time access to consistent, comparable and actionable Quality Management metrics across their business.

So glad to be a part of this great success story!

Read the full case study here