There are so many EHS software companies out there, it can be hard to know where to start. If you’re navigating the marketplace, you’re likely questioning: what does this EHS software company do different to that one?
In fact, independent analyst firm Verdantix found the similarity of most EHS software vendors leaves buyers confused.
However, there are indeed differences. Which EHS software company is right for your organization depends on factors including your company size and budget, existing IT, and functionality needs.
These and knowing vendor specialties will help you determine where to invest your time.
What do EHS software companies specialize in?
Generally, EHS software companies specialize in providing Environmental, Health and Safety software that supports safe and sustainable business operations. This can include modules such as Incident Management, Audits, Inspections, Permit to Work, and so on.
Beyond this, there are several areas of expertise that some vendors cater to, such as:
- Business size and budget size
- IT platform integration
- Low-risk or high-risk industries
- Primary access device type
- Functionality breadth or depth
For example, some vendors are better suited for small organizations or those in low-risk industries, like Banking or Education, looking for a simple recording solution.
Other EHS software companies cater for large enterprises in mid- or high-risk industries, like Utilities or Chemicals, seeking configured automation and in-depth business intelligence.
To ensure you aren’t wasting your time, it’s important to know which vendors specialize in what.
Here’s a brief guide to get you started.
1. On a budget: EHS Insight
EHS software isn’t cheap, but there are suitable options for organizations with a smaller budget.
For example, an ‘out-of-the-box’ solution is likely to cost less than a configurable one while meeting the needs of small companies in lower risk industries.
With that in mind, EHS Insight by StarTex offers a less expensive, fast setup solution. EHS Insight uses standard templates to meet the needs of organizations with simple requirements, and thus comes in at a lower price than more configurable systems.
Furthermore, EHS Insight’s multitenancy keeps the cost down for companies that don’t require the security and performance benefits of single tenant.
Some EHS software companies are indeed cheaper; however, bear in mind that your functionality requirements impact cost. If you have a small budget, keep the scope small, too.
What’s a small budget? Anything less than around $50,000, including setup and the first year’s license, is generally considered a small budget.
2. Big scope: Enablon
EHS software tends to be modular. That is, there are several optional components making up the system covering all aspects of Environmental, Health and Safety management.
Many companies will be looking for “everything”, and some will be able to pay for it.
Therefore, if you have a far-reaching scope and a big budget, Enablon should be on your longlist.
Enablon, by Wolters Kluwer, is one of the most well-known EHS software solutions, having been around since 2000. Verdantix states that Enablon is best suited to “large, multinational firms seeking an enterprise-wide platform offering.”
With their wide breadth of solutions extending to Engineering & Operations, Enablon comes in as one of the high-end EHS software companies.
What’s a big budget? Anything above around $150,000 in the first year can be considered a healthy budget for EHS software.
3. Microsoft 365: Pro-Sapien
Disconnected IT is a barrier to EHS improvement. In fact, ability to integrate with existing IT is a top priority for 56% of EHS software buyers according to NAEM, making it the most in-demand criteria.
In this case, if you are a Microsoft 365 enterprise seeking better EHS engagement, consider Pro-Sapien.
Pro-Sapien provides EHS software on Microsoft 365, integrating with the likes of Teams, SharePoint, and Power BI. This helps organizations boost EHS engagement, such as LBC Tank Terminals, a customer that increased near miss reporting by 370%.
Like Enablon, Pro-Sapien is enterprise-class. A lesser product breadth means relatively milder costs, although Pro-Sapien is still best suited to “organizations with 1,000+ employees”.
In the words of Verdantix, Pro-Sapien “Improves EHS Collaboration for Firms Already Invested in Or Seeking to Roll Out Microsoft 365”.
In summary, if you have multiple locations and use Microsoft 365, put Pro-Sapien on your EHS software company shortlist.
4. Australasia-focused: INX Software
Although Australia and New Zealand spend a fraction on EHS software compared to North America and Europe, they still comprise the third biggest EHS software marketplace.
Combined, the two countries account for 6% of the market and are worth around $9 million.
However, the dominance of North America and Europe means many EHS software companies primarily cater to these regions, without the local knowledge and staff to support organizations headquartered in Australasia.
If you’re in this region and local support is important to you, consider INX Software.
INX is headquartered in Perth, serving customers across the Asia-Pacific from four offices in Australia and New Zealand. The vendor specializes in supplying the resource and mining industries.
Their application is considered ‘out of the box’, making it a consideration for Australasian organizations seeking a straightforward solution.
5. Mobile-first: iAuditor
With 61% of Verdantix respondents already widely using EHS mobile apps or planning to increase roll out in 2022, mobile access is an essential feature.
The biggest problem is IT departments prohibiting the installation of corporate software on employees’ phones. So, be prepared to provide the hardware.
However, mobility continues to gain momentum.
Although most EHS software vendors provide mobile access, some concentrate on it as a key strength. That includes iAuditor.
iAuditor is mobile-first. That means design that works on mobiles is a priority, over and above larger screens. This can be ideal when much of the workforce regularly moves around, for example in Transportation.
If you know most of your data capture will be done on mobile devices, iAuditor is a valuable option.
EHS software company longlist vs. shortlist
First, create a longlist of EHS software companies you want to learn more about. Typically, a longlist is around 5-7 vendors.
Now you know about specialties, you can decide which vendors may fit your organization. At longlist stage, we recommend:
- Watching demo videos
- Having introductory calls with vendor sales reps
- Getting a quote
Importantly, getting a quote early on will help you qualify which vendors meet your budget.
Next, a shortlist of vendors determines which ones you’ll invest more time with. This should be 2-3 vendors.
At this point, you’ll partake in:
- Live demonstrations
- IT discussions
- Requirements reviews
This is also a good time to check out case studies.
Use EHS software company comparison websites
Still haven’t found what you were looking for? You can zoom in on EHS software vendors across any of these websites:
Verdantix is an independent analyst firm specializing in environment, health, safety and quality management. Their annual reports include the annual EHS global survey, covering 411 decision-makers across 25 industries and 35 countries.
Capterra is the home to reliable software reviews, all 700,000 of them. The website allows you to compare features, deployment, users and product rating of all EHS vendors.
When creating your longlist, take a look at the EHS Management Software category.
Software Advice is like Capterra and is actually run by the same company, Gartner Digital Networks.
However, there is a different selection of vendors on each site, so it might be worth checking out their EHS category.
Featured Customers collates client testimonials and case studies for user reviews.
Like Capterra, there is an Environmental, Health & Safety category—but Featured Customers helps most at shortlist stage.
When you have a shortlist of EHS software companies, check out what their customers are saying. As well as software performance, look for comments about customer relationship and support.
Comparison websites are a good place to start, but the most reliable information you’ll get is from the vendor. So, create a longlist and contact the vendors for a conversation.
Alternatively, another option is to involve an EHS consultant.
Failing to prepare is preparing to fail
You know the saying.
The environmental, health and safety software marketplace can be overwhelming at first glance. However, when you know exactly what you’re looking for, the search becomes clearer and more attainable.
In that vein, hopefully this article has provided some insight. By doing your research and knowing what you want, you’ll accelerate on your EHS journey.