Managing data sheets isn’t as straightforward as you might think. Choosing the right MSDS management company can make all the difference. Do you know what to look for?
With modern technology, business owners are now better equipped to educate, train, and protect their employees against chemical accidents in the workplace. Keep reading for important considerations when it comes to MSDS management.
1. MSDS vs SDS
You may have heard the term MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheet) and SDS (Safety Data Sheet) used interchangeably and wondered – is there a difference? SDS is simply the new term for the data sheets that provide safety information required by OSHA. MSDS is no longer the industry correct term as it was changed to mark OSHA’s new rules, but many still use the term.
2. Compliance Considerations
When a business owner hears “OSHA” their blood pressure is sure to rise. You never know when the white hats are going to come walking through your door for a surprise inspection. If they find any little thing out of compliance, the business will surely be fined, shut down, or both.
OSHA’s Hazard Communication Standards concerning safety data sheets is anything but simple. Are you sure your data sheets are OSHA compliant?
If not, sleep better at night by hiring a service with unmatched MSDS management experience to ensure your business is following the law. When the rules change, and they often do, your SDS management service needs to be able to make adjustments quickly without fail.
3. Reliable Solutions
When it comes to safety data sheets and safety in general, usually or “most of the time” just doesn’t cut it. Be sure that your MSDS management partner guarantees their service. Check their service agreement and ask contingency questions like:
- Are the data sheets available to your workers 100% of the time?
- Are they readily accessible to employees at a moment’s notice?
- What about system failures or downtime?
- What guarantees do you offer?
The business owner is ultimately responsible. Having a reliable service you can count on completely is of the utmost importance. Any one mistake could be disastrous.
4. Reputation and Experience
Some things in business demand special attention. Choosing an MSDS management company is certainly one of them.
Whenever you partner with any company, take the time to learn a bit about them.
How long have they been in business? Check online customer reviews and call around to see what others are saying about their service.
5. Work Site Technical Issues
Do you have the IT infrastructure in place to support online MSDS management? These days, nearly everyone has a smartphone but you may need a few thoughtfully placed computer terminals to access the database if needed. When using their smartphones to look up chemical data sheets, employees will want to have WiFi access so site-wide internet availability is important.
6. Look for Added Value
In today’s competitive B2B market you should come to expect nothing short of the best from your partners. Does the MSDS management service include help with setting up the software, training employees/supervisors, and useful advice on safety management?
7. Cost of Service
Make sure you are getting what you pay for. Get everything in writing and be sure your expectations are met.
When comparing management service costs it is important to realize cheaper doesn’t mean better. At the same time, overpaying for MSDS management services isn’t ideal either. The quality of service should exceed all expectations.
8. Quality Communication
Quality customer service means open and honest communication. The company you work with needs to value the business relationship by prioritizing communication.
Much like first impressions when you meet someone in your personal life, the first contact with a company gives you an idea of what you are likely to experience working with them. Are they genuinely interested in understanding your business needs or only talking at you, full of assumptions?
9. Paper Binders
There are many reasons to go digital with all your company files. Going paperless, or at least adding an online database makes good sense in a number of ways.
Paper is easily damaged, destroyed, or lost where an online database is protected and backed up. Using paper binders limits access to one person at a time and at a single location. An online database is easily accessed by anyone, anywhere, and at any time – instantly.
10. The Proof Is in the Pudding
There is no reason to feel uncomfortable working with an MSDS management company. Before anything is signed, all your questions should have been answered and any doubts cleared. Ask for a demonstration of their products and systems before making your final decision.
Professional MSDS Management Company
Delegating the responsibility of safety management is an important decision that you don’t want to take lightly. Choose wisely and take solace that you have one less thing to worry about concerning properly running a safe workplace.
The peace of mind you get from a contract with an MSDS management company is invaluable. The safety of your employees and your company’s legal standing are at stake.
MSDS management is our business and we have been at it since 1985. Hundreds of satisfied company’s of all sizes use our software solutions to streamline their MSDS management. Schedule a demo today and we would be happy to show you how it works.