EHS Manager, Fortune Electric Ltd.
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Describe your business. What types of products do you make and what type of companies do you supply?
I work for Fortune Electric (Wuhan) Ltd., a company based in Hubei that assembles transformers for power stations and big facilities, supplying both the local and international market. I work in the Administrative Division, responsible for EHS management within the company.
What are some of the challenges you face as a supplier to meet requirements either from the Chinese government or multinational companies that you are supplying?
In recent years we have seen the local government enforce more and more on environmental protection and energy efficiency in Wuhan. In addition, our customers, including GE, prioritize EHS as one of their key topics when we do business with them. We understand it is a company’s social responsibility to protect its workers and the environment.
Why did you decide to attend the EHS Academy? What had you heard about it before you went?
The people from GE told us about this training opportunity. In the past, we did some EHS-related activities at our site, but these were not the systemic tools we needed, and we had no specific department to handle EHS. As a result, the effect of these activities were not very effective. We have done business with GE over the years and GE has provided us with many helpful suggestions for our EHS improvement.
Last year, Fortune’s board director, Mr. Sun, decided to establish an EHS department. Fortune realized that EHS would be an investment in the company, because it helps to make our business stable and helps to improve our competitiveness. The value we received out of the EHS training is higher than what we invested financially. We want to continuously improve our EHS management system, and we are looking forward to more EHS training and help with building our new EHS team.
Describe your experience at the EHS Academy. Who did you meet, what did you learn and what were the most valuable lessons you took away?
The EHS Academy courses had a deep impression on me, particularly the sessions when the EHS Academy’s trainers taught us the tools to use for hazard recognition and assessment, the occupational disease prevention and regulation and the accident investigation methods. The benefits of these tools were quite clear, and different from what I knew before. These courses are so practical. I met some knowledgeable trainers, and their courses are meaningful and have an impact. I also met many management leaders from other companies, and we were able to share experiences during the training.
What kinds of changes have you brought to your operations after taking the training at the EHS Academy?
After we returned from the training, we communicated what we learned with our employees, and launched the EHS management system. This new system involves changes in a company’s culture, starting with EHS performance appraisal, timely EHS inspection, communicating the findings and improving through follow-up. We also had a successful EHS Enforcement Quarter at the end of last year. We had good employee involvement in these activities.
What improvements did you see in your factories after you made changes that you learned about at the EHS Academy?
Recently, we made two improvements. 1) Following the working processes learned at the Academy, each working station at Fortune started to use the Job Safety Analysis tools. 2) Provided with the training on new accident/incident investigation, we have significantly improved our program.
Would you recommend the EHS Academy to other suppliers in China?
Yes, I would. Participating in the training, I met many people from other companies, even though most of their jobs are not in EHS because they don’t have an EHS department. Because EHS is only one part of their daily job, their EHS knowledge is not enough, and thus, EHS training is helpful for them and for their companies. People who go through the EHS Academy learn the best EHS concepts and tools.