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The return of an old interview series, in which I catch up with key exhibitors of the upcoming Safety & Health Expo in London.
In this interview I speak to Chris Newson from Make UK about challenges in health & safety in the manufacturing sector, what he sees on the horizon and his reasons for exhibiting at our event next week.
Chris is Health, Safety and Sustainability Director at the organisation, which represents almost 3 million people working in manufacturing in the UK.
According to Make UK, Britain is one of the world’s biggest manufacturing nations and this organisation exists to help manufacturing businesses meet their goals. They do this through campaigning, government representation, and the gathering of industry intelligence. Additionally, they provide a portfolio of business services including health, safety and environmental consultancy and training.
Chris Newson (CN): Against the current economic climate, we’re seeing a lot of health & safety professionals having difficulty convincing senior management that what they do and recommend is not discretionary spend. Indeed, many companies have made significant cuts in their health & safety resources in recent times. This has led to additional support from Make UK being required, either in terms of compliance, where we draft an interim manager in when things have gone wrong, or in helping to convince others that health & safety should be at the top of the agenda.
CN: I’m optimistic. Some positives will come out of the drive to reduce spend. We see our most innovative members looking at alternative ways to ensure compliance & upskill staff around health and safety. Additionally, we have seen a significant rise in members looking at the benefits training solutions like gamification and eLearning bring.
Over the past year or so we’ve also been hearing a lot more about sustainability and ESG. I’ve seen a rise in hybrid health and safety roles that include the terms environment and sustainability.
CN: The HSS team at Make UK are dedicated to supporting the health and safety community. As a key calendar date for this group, the Safety & Health Expo was an obvious choice for us to exhibit at.
One of our key reasons for exhibiting is to connect with professionals within the industry to further understand the current opportunities and challenges. This knowledge will help us to ensure our services are best designed to meet the needs of our customers.
Make UK are extremely proud of the breath of service we’re able to provide. From training to consultancy, provision of EHS software to the supply of interim staff – Make UK can help. We’re hoping to demonstrate this on our stand in May.
We’ll be showing demos of our EHS software and talking to visitors about our unique ability to combine expert EHS guidance and support with market-leading technology to help save time, reduce risk and increase confidence. We’ll also engage with visitors regarding their organisation’s safety culture as we’re aware that this an important EHS priority. We’ve developed a 4-step process for safety culture change that we’ll happily discuss with those looking to improve in this area.
You will find Chris and his colleagues at Safety & Health Expo at Excel, London, from 16–18 May. Simply register to attend here.