Driving Worker Engagement in EHS: Does the Mobile Application You Choose Really Matter?

Every once in a while, it’s necessary to take a step back, rethink, and challenge your assumptions. This is especially true when it comes to evolving technology and mobile application development.

Enterprises are rapidly adopting mobility. According to a global survey by Transparency Market Research, 71% of business enterprises believe mobility is a top priority, and 63% think mobility is the most significant factor in gaining a competitive advantage.

Software developers, encouraged and empowered by the likes of Google and Amazon, are creating browser-based solutions to deliver a truly mobile-friendly experience. These mobile-first solutions are designed to automatically scale to a user’s screen size and to operate on any device. It’s an intuitive and user-friendly experience – unlike those good old days where you had the option to choose between 1x or 2x zoom while using an app on your iPad.


from Mac Observer


And, they are not the ghosts of past enterprise applications marketed to be accessible through a web-browser but were just the desktop version of the application that rendered in tiny fonts with “click here” buttons.

The growth of mobile-first apps signals new options and possibilities for the growth and success of enterprise mobility. 

What to Consider When Choosing a Mobile Solution

With the millions of mobile applications out there – how do you know what’s right for your organization? What you don’t want, is to add to the already alarming statistic that 80% of enterprise mobile apps are abandoned after their first use – especially when you factor in all the effort it takes to select a device or devices to standardize on and then to perform your application due diligence.

In 2017, the average enterprise IT team deployed and managed between 10 and 29 mobile apps according to 451 Research. Managing this many apps can get expensive and present IT with a number of security risks.

Now think of the burden on your employee. The average employee uses 9.4 apps every day just to get work done, and 74% have five apps open at the same time – which isn’t conducive to productivity according to a study by Harmon.ie.

It’s so important to choose wisely. This means considering several criteria. Most importantly, you need to understand:

  1. How your employees are going to interact with the application
  2. What value needs to be attributed to the user-experience
  3. How you can reduce the burden on your IT and support teams

When it comes to deploying a mobile enterprise application, the only way your organization can really achieve thee desired ROI is to ensure its use becomes entrenched in the corporate culture. 

Executive management teams have realized the importance of corporate social responsibility (CSR) and Operational Excellence initiatives. According to Verdantix, “Safety is almost always found in the ‘core values’ list of any major organization.” Ensuring your teams have tools that can actively engage them in these programs – whether it be casual or daily usage of employee portals that promote these initiatives can be a differentiator and directly impact the organization’s bottom line. As such, the organization needs to ensure the functionality is easily accessible. The deployment of an EHS mobile application or employee portal which is available on any device (smartphone, tablet, desktop monitor) with the same user experience can be a key factor in ensuring repeat usage and entrenchment. 

Mobile Solution or Desktop Version?

Maybe you’re asking, “Do I really need to offer a mobile solution or is a desktop version enough?”

If you’re debating this, ask yourself and colleagues a few simple questions:

  • Do your employees need to access their EHS employee portal more than once to be compliant with health checks or more?
  • Would employees be more productive if they could do this work in the field?
  • Are you looking to attract a younger workforce?

If the answer is yes, then a mobile-first app will support the agility, transparency and flexibility your employees and IT teams require to drive the most rapid ROI and meet the needs of a multi-generational workforce. 

For organizations that are also embracing EHS employee portals for frequent users, you can expect to realize a 5-10% increase in productivity by selecting a mobile-solution. According to Motorola, organizations who have embraced mobility are seeing a daily average time savings of 42 minutes per employee. Mobile-first design supports online and offline environments to support remote workers and environments such as areas where intrinsically safe devices are required.

EHS mobile solutions can help engage your workforce in daily Health and Safety activities.


Mobility is inherent in the application design which means you may not be paying more for a mobile option or an app download.


By design, mobile-first applications provide enterprises with additional IT efficiencies when it comes to on-going support, training and deployment without compromising security. Read more about these benefits here

Summing Up

Mobility is a key facet of an enterprise’s digital transformation initiatives which at the heart are designed to deliver uninterrupted operations and the automation of business processes. Digital transformation also includes the Internet of Things, moving toward Cloud or SaaS applications, Big Data, and more. A mobile-first platform supports a digital transformation strategy as they are extensions of SaaS solutions.

It provides long-term growth and allows for the collection of EHS data at any time from any location. Employees like using mobile devices and there are proven cost-savings and efficiency gains. Mobile devices now offer essentially the same functionality as laptops and desktop computers with the added benefit of not being tethered to a physical location.

With all these demands on your organization, choosing the right mobile solution is paramount. Take a moment to rethink the benefits of mobile-first for your EHSQ employee portal solution. 

Learn More

To learn more about how a mobile-first EHSQ solution can help entrench participation in your programs and strengthen your safety and sustainability culture, watch this 90-second video

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