Workplace Solutions Safety program management

Investing in digital safety

How can I get my CEO’s buy-in for a safety software program?


Responding is Chris Fanning, president and CEO, KPA, Lafayette, CO.

Over the past two years, organizations across all industries have faced an ever-changing landscape of environmental, health and safety challenges. The nationwide labor shortage, the COVID-19 pandemic and an evolving regulatory environment have created compounding safety risks. Your organization needs the right tools to adjust. A safety software program can help, but you’ll need your CEO’s support to update your current system and processes. Here, I’ll walk you through three steps that can help get your CEO on board with investing in digital safety management technology.

Step 1: Lead with productivity data

In the workplace, safety and productivity are directly related. In 2020, workers averaged 12 days away from work as a result of nonfatal injuries. Injury-related absences delay revenue-driving activities, of course, but they can also discourage team members, which hurts productivity. And because many organizations are working with smaller teams, each injury has an outsize impact.

Safety software can help organizations boost productivity by strengthening safety education and protocol enforcement. Leading with numbers helps you illustrate the productivity impact of safety software. To take a data-driven approach:

  • Show how injuries affect your organization’s productivity.
  • Calculate projected productivity increases you’d get with a safe and fully staffed workforce.

Step 2: Emphasize the regulatory, insurance and financial benefits

Your CEO needs every tool available to help keep the organization compliant with OSHA regulations. Without the right safety protocols in place, your organization could get saddled with fines of up to seven figures.

When pitching a safety software program, show your CEO how the technology can help your organization stay compliant. If an injury does occur, safety software can help you prove your compliance and lower any potential fines.

Another benefit to highlight: A safety software program could lower your organization’s insurance premiums. With a tech-driven safety education program, you can avoid the incidents that lead to premium hikes and introduce cost savings overall.

Finally, remember to emphasize how a safe workplace can help reduce workers’ compensation payments. On average, employers pay out $42,008 a claim – and with an unsafe work environment, that can quickly add up.

Step 3: Do your research on safety software platforms

Before presenting a safety software program to your CEO, make sure to conduct in-depth research on platform providers. Then, present to your CEO no more than three options, plus a recommendation. Come to the table with software that provides:

  • A quick path to implementation to drive results fast and reduce total cost of ownership.
  • An easy-to-use mobile application to drive adoption.
  • A robust safety training library to keep your workforce prepared.
  • Configurable forms for audits, inspections and incident management to meet specific needs.
  • Reporting and analytics tools to measure your progress.

Every CEO needs tools to manage risk

At its core, digital safety software is a risk management tool. That’s something from which every CEO can benefit.

The right software program will provide a full suite of features to reduce the risk of workplace injury or death. A tech-forward safety approach makes it easier for supervisors to operate safe workplaces. When your team leaders have digital safety tools, they can prevent incidents before they happen.

Editor's note: This article represents the independent views of the author and should not be construed as a National Safety Council endorsement.

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