The Electricity Supply Board (ESB) is a state owned electricity company operating in the Republic of Ireland. Its history goes back to the beginning of the Irish State and Ireland’s first large-scale electricity plant at Ardnacrusha on the Shannon.
The ESB is composed of several distinct business groups, including ESB Networks which manages the electricity transmission system, ESB Generation and Wholesale Markets, Electric Ireland which supplies energy to the domestic market, and ESB International Limited which provides electrical engineering consultancy services around the world.
ESB operates in an inherently high energy, multiple hazard industry which can potentially be harmful to life, health, assets, and the environment. An essential element in ESB operations is the identification and management of risk, which is a fundamental requirement for managing and seeking improvements in safety.
Integrated EHS Management
SHIELD is the Environment, Health and Safety (EHS) Management solution operating in ESB. It is powered by SCANNELL (originally called enviroMANAGER), a modular web-based software system that enables ESB to record and manage Incidents, Risk, Audit, Law and monitor Environmental, Health and Safety data through a single system across all business groups.
It was launched in July 2014 with the implementation of the Incident module and the remaining modules were implemented during 2015. A mobile App was added in 2018.
The necessity for SHIELD became apparent when a review of safety reporting systems was conducted in 2010. This found that there were 37 separate systems used to manage safety information alone. Many of these systems recorded similar information but in different formats.
There was weak oversight and validation of the information. Safety reporting was taking up a significant portion of safety specialists’ time. There was little sharing of information between businesses and it was difficult to understand where the significant EHS risks lay.
ESB’s goal is to have a consistent and rigorous approach to safety with safety firmly embedded as a value with the overall goal of zero harm. A fit for purpose integrated Environmental, Health and Safety risk management solution is needed to facilitate the business in delivering this key strategic goal.
In determining the business and technical requirements for a single solution the similarities between safety and environment reporting informed a decision to seek a solution for Environment, Health and Safety. The solution would include an IT system and changes to business processes.
Following a competitive tender process for a suitable IT system, SCANNELL was chosen to manage the following key EHS areas:
- Incidents – including personal injuries, near miss incidents and environmental incidents.
- Risk – planning and conducting audits of key risk areas.
- Law – provision of a legal register and compliance tool.
- Data – monitoring tool for statutory compliance and other checks
The benefits the system brings to ESB include:
- the active management of key environment, health and safety risks,
- demonstrating legal compliance and
- consistent and transparent reporting.
This integrated SHIELD solution is aligned to the Safety Leadership Framework by demonstrating leadership through retiring legacy systems and embracing the single solution.
- Compliance by transparency of information provides assurance on compliance,
- Competence through Incident Investigation findings,
- Competency risk assessments and audits, and
- Engagement through active consistent use of the solution by all businesses.
The Implementation process, supported by SCANNELL, involved matching the business requirements to the solution and learning new business processes and how to apply them in SCANNELL.
Implementation of the SCANNELL system throughout the large ESB organisation was one of the largest and most successful IT projects undertaken by the ESB.
This case study is based on the article first published in the ESB Blog, Behind the Scenes.
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