The ‘human element’ is increasingly recognized as a critical aspect of business that is central to long-term resilience. Rather than being purely about keeping people safe and preventing injury and illness in the workplace, momentum is building towards recognizing the whole person, including wellness outside of work.

As a result, the health and safety function is evolving to respond to shifting stakeholder expectations around what comprises health and safety, as illustrated in the latest ERM Global Health and Safety Survey.

Evolution also continues to take place in the realm of human capital. Investors and other stakeholders are scrutinizing human capital management and performance trends and calling for new human capital disclosures.

Historic discussion on human capital management inside companies has most often happened in the context of board level governance and oversight, with boards tending to consider human capital management via a human resources lens, and sometimes an ESG lens, but rarely delving into the health and safety arena.

There is huge potential benefit to more deeply integrating health and safety learnings and expertise into human capital thinking. This report explores three areas where companies have opportunities to do this:

  • Company Culture: Developing a culture of care reflects human capital management best practice. It begins with ensuring health, safety, and well-being.
  • Governance: Creating cross-functional teams that include health and safety professionals enhances human capital management, increases business resilience, and improves ESG performance.
  • Transparency & Disclosure: Investor, customer, employee, and community demands for ESG performance data increasingly include human capital management information, aspects of which exist within the health and safety function.