Sustaining Safety Excellence
Aramco showcases safety leadership at ASSP conference
“We must pursue continual improvement — raising our standards instead of simply sustaining them.”
The American Society of Safety Professionals (ASSP) Middle East Chapter (MEC) Professional Development Conference and Exhibition took place in Bahrain recently, bringing together industry leaders and subject matter experts to focus on “Sustaining HSE Excellence.”
The well attended event, of which Aramco was a partner and co-organizer, addressed on-trend topics, including safety leadership, digitalization, safety psychology, and women in safety, under the patronage of HE General Shaikh Rashid bin Abdullah Al Khalifa, Bahrain’s Minister of Interior.
Did you know?
ASSP MEC is part of an international organization with 37,000 members founded in 1911 to serve as a global community for occupational safety and health professionals.
Opening the conference at the Island Kingdom’s Gulf Hotel, Aramco’s executive vice president of Human Resources and Corporate Services, Nabeel A. Al-Jama’ said, “I believe our mission as safety leaders and professionals goes beyond sustaining excellence. Rather, we must pursue continual improvement — raising our standards instead of simply sustaining them.”
Building capabilities across the Kingdom
Al-Jama’ explained how Aramco has committed to such a program of continual improvement, providing safety professionals with specialized learning and certification opportunities. He added that Aramco’s efforts extend beyond our company to building greater safety capabilities across the Kingdom, highlighting our collaboration with the Saudi National Industrial Training Institute, and the National Council for Safety and Occupational Health.
“Together, these efforts are taking us to the next level of safety training, development, and implementation,” he said.
In addition, Al-Jama’ outlined how Aramco is leveraging new tools and technologies to enhance the company’s HSE performance, with a particular focus on Fourth Industrial Revolution advances.
He said, “… we are now routinely developing and utilizing technologies that would have been unimaginable a few years ago, such as remote inspection, AI and robotics, on-site video analytics, and smart wearables.”
A unique and finely crafted responsibility
Aramco’s keynote speakers at the event were senior vice president of Project Management, Abdulkarim A. Al Ghamdi, and senior vice president of Safety and Industrial Security, Aali M. Al Zahrani.
Al Zahrani spoke to the importance of safety leadership, emphasizing that, “Leadership is a unique and finely crafted responsibility that is not about being in charge or giving orders. It is about actively upholding corporate standards, and practicing continued engagement to support and enhance a safety culture that is driven by our collective desire to go above and beyond safety excellence.”
He outlined Aramco’s baseline for safety standards — our Safety Management System — and the tools of safety performance measurement and assurance, including the Executive Management Safety Reviews, which he said, “epitomize the value Aramco places on visible and proactive safety leadership as a means to drive continuous improvement.”
Strong tools and accountability
Al Zahrani also described Aramco’s Safety Management Committees, held every quarter, and the Loss Prevention Compliance Review — “… one of the strongest tools in our Aramco safety toolkit.” He explained the importance of making sure leadership itself is accountable — a function overseen and maintained by our HSSE Committee.
Highlighting Aramco’s world-class specialized series of safety-related workshops and programs for each leadership level, Al Zahrani added, “Effective leadership is a critical function of business success and ongoing safety assurance cannot be sustained without it … The key to successful leadership is the leaders themselves.”
One team mindset
Al Ghamdi, delivering his keynote speech on “Building and Construction Safety,” outlined Aramco’s key pillars — including digital transformation, leadership, partnerships, empowering employees, training, and a “one team” mindset — that enable our company to “raise the bar when it comes to our HSE performance.”
Al Ghamdi also outlined Aramco’s robust well-being program, which includes support delivered via a 24-hour, seven-day-a-week hotline. In addition, he highlighted the four Strategic Safety Training hubs Aramco has established within the Kingdom to standardize contractor training.
Embracing technology is vital to keeping Aramco people, assets and the environment safe, said Al Ghamdi, providing various examples of successful projects that have helped drive down risk. One such example is Aramco’s Advanced Project Control Centers, which enable the remote monitoring of everything from site equipment to the speed and location of vehicles, helping to minimize safety incidents.
Caption for top photo: Safety has long been a priority at Aramco wherever it does business — from its offshore operations to plants and facilities to its communities and beyond.