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Why manage Health, Safety and the Environment using Maximo?

Technical Blog Post


Why manage Health, Safety and the Environment using Maximo?


A good place to start might be with some definition of terms. There are a number of acronyms used to refer to the management of health, safety and the environment. We have seen SHE, HSSE, HSE and EHS all used by our customers. HSE just happens to be the terminology used by IBM’s new Maximo Health, Safety and Environment Manager product. In this blog I’ll refer to HSE Manager as the product and HSE as a generic acronym for the domain that covers the management of health, safety and the environment. That said, let’s consider why using Maximo to manage the HSE domain might be a good thing.

For many years Maximo Asset Management has included a Safety module which allows for the definition of hazards and precautions, hazardous materials and tag out/lock out. It’s fair to say that only a relatively small proportion of our customers choose to implement this capability. Several years ago we introduced the Maximo Oil and Gas Industry Solution product. A major customer driver was supporting safe and reliable operations. It was clear from discussions with our oil and gas customers that many of them were looking for capability which went beyond the existing Maximo Safety module. Over several releases we have introduced additional capability into Maximo Oil and Gas to support incident management and investigation, risk assessment, management of change, continuous improvement and organizational learning to name just a proportion of the customer HSE processes supported. Interestingly, over the last couple of years, we have started to see customers in industries outside of oil and gas purchase the product for HSE use, as almost all the HSE capability in the product is generic. After extensive review and discussion with customers it was decided that we could use the capability provided in Oil and Gas to introduce a product that specifically supports HSE in any industry sector.

So what are the common factors that cause customers to extend their use of Maximo into the HSE domain? Perhaps the most important one is that work management and HSE management all utilise the same physical asset structures and human resources. Many HSE systems use asset structures that are different to that used by work management. This can make the association of HSE incidents, or other related artefacts, with asset terminology used by maintenance and operations difficult, if not impossible. Existing Maximo customers who have established physical asset structures can leverage these structures by adding HSE Manager as a component of their Maximo infrastructure. The second major factor is the ability to integration maintenance and operational processes. Many HSE incidents originate from managing maintenance work. With HSE Manager you can use the related records capability inherent to Maximo to relate work, incident management, investigation of unresolved incidents, management of subsequent change and formal action. Of course you can also manage HSE activities not directly associated with work management as well! Existing Maximo customers with expertise in configuring Maximo will find all the configurable capabilities such as escalations, workflow and service level agreements can be leveraged with Maximo HSE Manager. New customers will have the opportunity to deploy a level of configurability that is not often found in specialist HSE applications.

There is much evidence to suggest that reinforcing the ability of maintenance, operations and engineering to work together, using common processes, enhances organizational performance in the area of safety and reliability. This is a subject to which we will return in a future blog. In the meantime the Maximo HSE Manager development team would welcome dialog with anyone interested in using Maximo to support their HSE processes. Further information on Maximo HSE Manager can be found at

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