In our annual, global survey of EHS decision-makers we spoke to 411 respondents: 23% told us that innovation is essential for the success of the EHS function and a massive 60% said that innovation is a high priority for the EHS function. You heard right: 83% of EHS managers think innovation is an important part of what their business function does. A big change from the days when the self-perception of EHS professionals was “compliance police”. But how far can this focus on innovation be stretched? Implementing EHS software is increasingly seen as a given. Hold onto your hard hats. In 2019, the EHS community will be expected to understand IoT safety platforms.
IoT safety platforms are designed to aggregate data from equipment-fixed digital sensors, smart phones and industrial wearables. Firms will need an IoT data processing platform to cope with the vast volumes of data pushed out by wearables from vendors like Honeywell Connected Worker, Reactec and SmartCap. Importantly, they will only want one platform even if using wearables from many digital PPE suppliers. These IoT safety platforms also need to analyse safety data from IoT devices such as worker fatigue and gas leaks. They may also combine this streaming data with ad hoc incident reports and near miss observations. Do tech-weary safety professionals really need this technology in 2019? Yes, the most innovative segment do need an IoT safety platform. According to the Verdantix global EHS survey, 22% of EHS professionals expect to use vital signs monitoring wearables widely across their operations in 2019, 43% plan the same with location tracking wearables and 44% with environmental digital sensors.