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ASK VISICS – “Mitigating labour shortage with Digital Solutions?”

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Finding the right personnel to work in high risk industries is becoming increasingly difficult for managers these days. Why not use technology to improve safety and efficiency? The innovative solution called Digital Confined Space Solution we offer that reduces the labor burden while improving monitoring capabilities.

For years prior to the pandemic, energy sector observers warned of the need to attract and retain a skilled workforce. In 2019, the Global Energy Talent Index reported that labor shortages continued to grow due to multiple factors, including retirement and job shifts to more attractive sectors. COVID-19 only made matters worse as workers left the workforce with no intention of returning.

Technology to the Rescue

But like many other challenges posed by the COVID pandemic, labor ambiguity, costs and security measures can all be addressed with digital technologies that allow for greater flexibility, fewer staff and greater efficiency. Take, for example, Digital Confined Space Monitoring (DCSM). Traditionally, confined space surveillance is performed with one security officer monitoring one confined space (ratio 1-1)

Due to a lack of information from the inside of the confined space and historical working methods, traditional security guards are limited in their ability to act. Should an accident occur in a confined space, there are few resources to alert contractors inside and little information available to guide rescue personnel. This also makes it difficult to concretely identify the incident and learn from it.

With these working methods, sites planning for turnarounds must account for not only one safety attendant to every confined space, but also for standby firewatchers and rescue personnel, all whilst needing to reduce headcount, contact, and costs in the growing wake of the labor shortage. This is just a fraction of the new challenges faced by turnaround planners. So, how can contractors, planners, and operators emerge as industry leaders post-pandemic? Well, now, more than ever, may be the time for energy industries to seize digitalization opportunities.

Setting goals

To find solutions to labor shortage challenges, the first step is to identify your objectives. Common objectives shared amid the growing labor shortage during the global pandemic include:

  • Cutting costs.
  • Increasing efficiency.
  • Decreasing headcount.
  • Increasing safety.

These objectives can seem contradictory at first, especially when applying traditional business rationale, but when innovative thinking is applied and technology is factored in, the possibilities are endless. The trick is to simplify what your tangible objectives are. Digitalization, data, and technology can all be intimidating and complicated words—the results should not be. When thinking back to the example of confined space monitoring, achieving the mentioned objectives under today’s pressures can be relatively simple with DCSM technology.

You can read our full article about ”Leveraging Digital Confined Space Technologies to Mitigate the Growing Labor Shortage” here:

VISICSASK VISICS – “Mitigating labour shortage with Digital Solutions?”

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