Why Management is Essential for an Organization’s EHS Program
Researchers discovered the correlation between employment longevity and ecological conservation efforts. Employees prefer working at a purpose-driven, sustainable company. Maintaining an efficient environmental health and safety (EHS) program is essential to business success.
Adopting eco-conscious workplace habits also aligns with eco-consumerism values. Companies can increase their profitability by catering to client demands. Additionally, adequate environmental management programs align with President Biden’s newly established carbon neutrality efforts.
Challenges with Poor Management
Over the past year, environmental regulations were constantly changing. Some companies required maximum personal protective equipment (PPE) coverage. Others obliged their employees to work from home.
In one U.S. district, nearly 60 establishments received fines for breaking regulations. The government required the locations to close for a certain number of days, decreasing their monthly revenue. Similarly, if companies set rules and lack enforcement, the entire establishment can suffer the consequences.
An optimal example of a poorly managed EHS program occurred in Flint, Michigan. The government’s inability to manage city water use left an entire county ill. High lead levels remained in the water supply, and the government turned a blind eye to maintain low supply costs.
As more individuals developed lead poisoning and Legionnaires’ disease, lawsuits arose. Residents sued the state, and they held the poorly managed environmental program accountable. Fortunately, companies can use efficient management techniques, improving health and safety while decreasing adverse effects.
Today, many companies hire Chief Sustainability Officers (CSO), integrating environmental protection and financial success. They hold training programs for employees, educating them on new regulations and ecological expectations. Many companies are increasing their transparency, displaying their sustainability levels to consumers.
Stakeholders also look for current sustainability reports. CSOs must collect internal data regarding emission levels, material waste and more, accessing the data. If employees lack compliance with the company’s environmental conservation efforts, stakeholders and customers may pull away.
Before receiving a professional assessment, EHS managers may perform their own evaluation of a company’s practices. They can install a smart energy monitor on the office’s meter, receiving direct readings. If electricity consumption is high, they may enforce more energy-efficient regulations.
The manager may also examine onsite chemical pollution levels. If employees come into contact with certain pollutants, they can develop adverse health effects. Decreasing their exposure to harsh elements can increase the sustainability of a company.
If the manager fails to conduct an internal inspection before an assessment, the company can acquire fines, or the government can shut them down. More importantly, an inadequately inspected workplace can increase employees’ exposure to safety hazards. Illnesses and fatalities occurring on company property can significantly decrease good brand awareness.
Outside of placing recycling bins around the office, EHS managers must enforce physical and mental regulations. Many sustainable companies abide by the triple bottom line ideal. They unite employees, the environment and profit, achieving workplace success.
Enforcing environmental safety regulations extends beyond the business’s profitability. It also aligns with new government regulations, contributing to a carbon-neutral future. President Biden signed the Paris Agreement upon entering office, signifying our commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
He plans on achieving the goal by developing a sustainable infrastructure in America. Converting commercial energy supplies away from fossil fuels towards clean power is part of the plan. Managers can ensure a company’s use of renewable energy sources and its reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.
Benefits of Good Management
An adequately managed EHS program can optimize a company’s reputation on the market. Today, Generation Z and Millennial consumers are more likely to purchase goods from sustainable companies than less expensive, environmentally degrading brands. Companies may remain competitive on the market by maintaining ecological protection.
Good management also protects employees, improving productivity rates. When workers feel like their employer cares about their wellbeing, they are more passionate about work. Protecting employee safety and health also improves a company’s reputation, prioritizing workers’ rights.
Improving EHS Management
Companies can improve their management program by hiring a CSO. Outside organizations can also intervene, providing training and guidance for business owners. If you recently failed an assessment or received poor employee feedback, reach out to a professional and positively alter your work environment today.
Author Bio: Jane works as the founder and editor-in-chief of Environment.co where she covers environmental news and sustainable living tips.