At a recent Customer Advisory Board meeting, a common theme amongst the EH&S professionals in the room was: “how can your company help us deliver more strategic value to our organization?” Long relegated to the list of necessary evils for doing business, health and safety initiatives along with their sister, environmental, have struggled with lack of budgets, lack of support, and lack of visibility. However, today’s EH&S teams are seeing light at the end of the tunnel. While continuing to focus on core health, safety, and environment compliance programs, the audience discussed the opportunity (and the reality) of becoming more involved in the strategic business direction and operation of their respective companies. These companies discussed current involvement in initiatives such as:
- New product development and introduction
- New market identification
- Risk management
- Sustainability and corporate responsibility
While this sounds like more work for the already over-worked, it’s actually great news for all EH&S professionals. In other words, this may be the golden ticket for EH&S to get a seat at the business table.