FUCHS LUBRICANTS CO (FLC), the US affiliate of FUCHS PETROLUB S. E., produces and sells lubricants and related specialty chemicals. In 2017, they sought a replacement for their paper-based incident management system. The ideal system would simplify reporting of near misses and incidents, help to identify hazards and areas of risk, and support their goals of improving their overall safety culture.
After a prolonged search, FLC selected Dakota Software’s ProActivity Suite. While the initial business driver was the support of their safety culture program, they recognized ProActivity’s compliance planning and assessment capabilities as unique and vital to establishing a strong foundation for their safety management programs. EHS Director, Frank Dunlap, formulated a roll out strategy focused on identifying areas of risk and sharing of information between their safety teams.
With nearly a quarter century of safety experience and a Masters of Engineering in Advanced Safety Engineering, Frank knew that humans are constantly managing risk, real time, during their work days. He recognized that data and information are the currency of safety and sought to help those managing the work by putting meaningful information in their hands. As such, he prioritized building a safety feedback loop, training their inside safety teams, and conducting Human Error Root Cause Analysis’ (RCAs).
They began with Dakota Scout for capturing incident and near miss data. They use it to collaborate on issues and conduct RCAs using the configurable alerts and journals. Corrective actions are created and tracked to closure in Dakota Tracer. Utilized by their Learning Teams, the steps for each job and process are outlined along with potential failures. This information is used during tailgate and pre-shift Injury Prevention meetings to defend against incidents and help ensure that they “fail safely.”
When events do occur, they use this information to move beyond the traditional root cause approach and focus on operational learning questions such as “What makes this job difficult?” and “Do you have the right tools?” Utilizing ProActivity, FLC succeeded in their goal of improving safety culture and outlined a winning strategy for engaging employees by putting information in the hands of those at the "sharp end" of safety.