Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, health and safety reporting was an important responsibility for businesses across the world. The pandemic has made that responsibility even more vital, as governments institute contact tracing to try to slow the spread of the disease. In order to allocate resources, companies need up-to-date information about the health of their employees.
Avara Foods, a major player among the UK’s largest food businesses, supplies poultry products to some of Britain’s largest supermarkets and restaurant chains. One of K2 Software’s first UK customers, Avara Foods has been using K2 Software’s intelligent process automation platform (now called K2 Cloud) for over 20 years to streamline processes and deliver ongoing efficiencies for the business. But until recently, Avara was still using a labor-intensive paper-based process to manage accident reports for its 7,000 employees.
Buried under a paper trail
The Avara Foods health and safety teams manage the risk of accidents occurring within its farms, factories, and office areas. Previously, employees used paper forms and spreadsheets to collect, analyze, and mitigate accident risk. But as the business grew, so did the number of independent paper-based systems.
Over time, managing the required interventions became extremely time-consuming and labor-intensive, with it taking several days to consolidate a view of health and safety risk across the sites. When Avara Foods merged with another food business, the company undertook a complete review of the processes and systems employed. This led to the decision to digitize and automate using K2 Software.
Instant access to first-aid incident reports
Avara Foods is using the platform as a catalyst to deliver a suite of health and safety apps for the business. The first of these is a standardized approach for first-aid incident reporting, which can be used at the organization’s seven food processing plants, six hatcheries, three mills (for producing poultry feed), and 100 owned and subcontracted farms. Employees record details of any incidents in a K2 SmartForm, which is then passed electronically to line managers and the health and safety manager for review and approval.
In the past, it would have taken three days to provide a summary view. Now, Avara Foods has oversight of 100% of first-aid incidents across the business on digital dashboards — instantly.
The new app gives Avara Foods the ability to capture quality data in a consistent format and makes that data available to the right person, instantaneously. Key among the benefits are mobile compatibility, instant access, and traceability — all of which are critical in a business where workers travel between sites, but even more so when many workers are operating from home due to the pandemic.
Critically, Avara Foods can now use the K2 Cloud dashboard in health and safety campaigns to monitor the impact of its interventions, determining whether first-aid incident numbers decrease as a result. Health and safety managers can also easily determine areas of concern within the business and target training where it is most needed. Consequently, Avara Foods anticipates that this app will significantly reduce the risk of accidents and improve the health and safety of its 7,000 employees.
Moreover, the K2 Cloud solution is beneficial for GDPR compliance, which dictates even tighter controls in the capture and storage of data. Avara Foods can feel confident in terms of where and how the data is stored, who has access to it, and, most importantly perhaps, ensuring that it gets destroyed at the right time and in the right manner.