How EMS Helps You Achieve Your Business - By Mark T

Discussion in 'Articles & Tutorials' started by Mark T, Jan 15, 2013.

  1. Mark T

    Mark T
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    Dec 28, 2011
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    If you have been in a competitive market for years, probably you are already aware of ISO [International Standards Organization] and their set of standards that are internationally recognized as a competitive tool and legislative requirement. It is a fact that getting certified to one of their standards gives you an advantage per se, due to the compliance and adherence it provides.

    One of the most common and debatable ISO standards today is the ISO 14001, also known as the Environmental Management System [EMS]. The ISO 14001 refers to the management of an organization’s environmental programs and evaluates it in a comprehensive, systematic and planned documented manner [as define by Wikipedia]. The EMS also includes implementation and maintenance of policy for environmental protection purposes, planning and resource developing and can also refer to software systems used in organizational environmental managements.

    Though most countries advice businesses, companies and organizations in local markets to comply with the said standard, there are still several business entities, and even non-profit organizations, that tend to overlook it.

    Why do you need EMS? What is its impact to your company?

    As we all know, global warming is a serious problem caused by human activity. And human activities are the effects of every business activity in every industry. The wastes that these businesses produce need to be managed carefully and should follow a certain process of proper disposal to avoid these wastes from poisoning the environment.
    As environmental issues tend to become a very important focus these days, every business should need to contribute in the protection and awareness to the safety of our environment, keeping it from further damage caused by such activities and wastes. That is why the Environmental Management System was created – which aims to provide a positive action in addressing these environmental issues and creating ways to lead organizations in giving focus on this matter.

    Though the EMS used legislation to address the matter, it does not fully filter down those who need it most – those smaller business entities that focuses more on their productivity side, not seeing and getting aware of the importance of their environmental responsibilities and obligation as well as the existence of ISO 14001 training which they can use as a stepping stone when applying for an ISO certification, specifically EMS.

    While smaller companies divert their resources to their productivity and almost nothing at their environmental obligations, bigger companies allocate part of their resources and provide a team that will focus on it – most importantly those regulated organizations that are strictly monitored. The EMS enables them to focus their team into implementing the system to their whole organization.

    Number of ways the ISO 14001 can benefit you:

    • Adequately in-line with legislative requirements existing in your country
    • Cost-savings to help divert your resources and energy to other projects you may have
    • Enable you to manage environmental hazards
    • Increase customer satisfaction, which you can use as a market differentiator against your competitors
    • Ensured compliance to possible supplier requirements that included EMS.
    • Help you in the continuous flow for improvement as a cycle, as well as properly evaluating your goals and your progress environmentally

    Stages of an EMS (According to ISO 14001 standard)

    • Commitment and policy
    • Planning
    • Implementation
    • Evaluation
    • Review

    Is ISO 14001 the only approach to EMS?

    The answer is no. Though ISO 14001 is an internationally recognized standard, it is not the only approach to EMS.

    There are 2 approaches to Environmental Management System which is ISO 14001 Standard and EMAS, or the Eco-Management and Audit Scheme. Though having one goal which is the EMS, both have specific difference:

    ISO 14001 Standard – specifies the actual requirements for an EMS, and consists of 3 key aims which are continuous improvement, cycle and legal compliance.
    EMAS – aims to provide recognition to those companies that go beyond the legal compliance set by them. It also requires organizations to provide formal and publicly available environmental statement in which is verified through governing and accredited bodies of EMAS.

    Solution: Get ISO 14001 Certified

    Even though you are only operating as a small company, evaluate it and think about getting ISO 14001 or EMS certified. Putting a priority to get certified and implement it on your business will surely help you grow and improve your competitiveness, while being aware of your responsibilities. Not only will you help in addressing environmental issues, but you will also start contributing to the promotion of health and safety programs. Lastly, you become adequately in-line with legislative requirements set by the government in your region imposing a positive feedback not only to your company but to your products and services as well.

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