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Teresa has been working alongside Health and Safety, Environmental and Facilities Managers for over 30 years. Her career has predominantly focused on providing information services to professionals with 25 years spent at Barbour, another 2 years at IHS and 4 years with Wolters Kluwer.
Teresa started her working career as a tennis coach and quickly found her ability to work with and alongside a wide range of people a key skill in enabling her next career move, consequently she then found Barbour by accident and never left the industry!
Teresa has been involved in all aspects of the Barbour business from Tele appointing, Sales, Product Development and now overseeing all of these areas as Brand Director, she has seen the Barbour service grow from one Health and Safety library on microfiche to over twenty modules in the current online service. More recently, she has been working with clients to devise both International and Mental Health and Wellbeing products and is constantly looking for ways to continually improve the service with a redesign and enhanced legal register facility now on the horizon.
September 12, 2019
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Teresa Higgins, Brand Director atBarbour, tells SHP a little about the service and it’s heritage.
“It’s incredible to think how quickly the health & safety role has evolved. Only a few years ago, health and safety professionals would be able to spend most of their working day out of their office on site but now with the amount of research and administration there is to do there is a real danger of not being able to leave the desk at all. Most of the day can be spent updating legal registers, getting ready for audits, keeping an eye on new legislation and amendments, writing newsletters, sending out topic of the month material, putting together training packages, thinking of different ways to try to develop the behaviour and culture of staff.
“As there aren’t any more hours in the day and not always the budget to hire more people to cover the extra responsibilities, time-saving and reliable tools are critical to help manage both compliance and time effectively. To enable us to support this rapid change in responsibilities we have had to evolve quickly too. We started 60 years ago on microfiche with a handful of acts, regulations and HSE guidance documents, this has now evolved into an online resource with over 100,000 documents, online. As professionals have moved into new areas such as environment, fire and security, mental health and wellbeing and International legislation we have too.
“When the need for quick easy to read information arose to support non specialists, we added a whole new section of easy to read, editable resources to help support the new level of information required.
“We produced model policy templates, one-page director and employee factsheets, detailed ‘how to guides’ covering topics quickly and effectively and when training tools were required, we added toolbox talks, eLearning modules and webinars, with CPD certificates. All to try to help support an ever-expanding role.
“The introduction of 18001, 14001 and now 45001 bought new challenges and by talking and working with clients we have added prepopulated legal registers, gap analysis tools and a bookmarking capability; giving clients the option of being alerted on important changes in guidance and standards, not just legislation.
“Keeping pace with these changes has been both exciting and rewarding for us. Giving EHS professionals a tool to keep up to date and compliant and help to save hours each week on research and development has been our mission. One thing is for certain the H&S role will keep on evolving and you can be safe in the knowledge that we will too.”