Ekornes Case Study
Streamlining SDS Management with EcoOnline
EcoOnline’s SDS management solution has helped keep the organisation compliant, streamline their processes and keep employees safe.
With 5 facilities across Norway and 1 in the United States, Ekornes is the largest furniture manufacturer in the region offering state of the art Scandinavian pieces. Founded in 1934, Ekornes has helped furnish homes, hotels, office buildings, and even ships with their innovative brand. A team of 1,500 strong, Ekornes’s people create furniture from start to finish including making wood frames, welding steel, producing foam, painting parts, and more to bring each piece to fruition.
When it comes to manufacturing furniture, team members can be exposed to hazardous chemicals on the job. Svein Kampenes, Quality and HSE Manager shared how EcoOnline’s SDS management solution has helped keep the organisation compliant, streamline their processes and keep employees safe.
“To get a better view of chemicals and maintain compliance within the region, you should get EcoOnline. It has helped us protect our teams and focus on our chemical safety approach.” - Svein Kampenes, Quality and HSE Manager
Like any location, there are certain regulations organisations need to follow if they are located in the Nordic region. With a paper-based system in place, Svein and his team found it difficult to keep up with all regulations and maintain compliance. Using this approach, safety data sheets were stored in several folders across the organisation, making it hard to easily find the right document and have access to the latest, updated sheets. This also took time away from other key activities.
Having information in different locations made it very difficult to protect employees. Safety data sheets contain information on possible hazards that could arise when handling and using specific chemical products, including possible health hazards. With documents in different places, it was a challenge to extract the necessary information needed to develop efficient risk assessments and implement the controls needed to reduce potential risks.
"All of our processes were manual, with our safety data sheets found in different places. It took time to find what we needed since we had 16 folders of paper copies to look through. This made it hard to access the information easily and keep track of updating the safety data sheets.”
Svein Kampenes, Quality and HSE Manager, Ekornes
A paper-based approach was not a sustainable method to manage such a large organization’s safety data sheets. Ekornes recognised this and began looking for digital options.
With an effective SDS management software, Ekornes would be able to streamline their SDS management processes to maintain compliance with the region’s regulations. EcoOnline was able to deliver on all Ekornes’s needs and more!
Why Ekornes Chose EcoOnline's Chemical Manager
“EcoOnline is a company with a large presence in the Norwegian market. With its extensive SDS database, you can easily see which chemicals are found within Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation, and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) regulations in Europe to take the necessary action. EcoOnline also allowed us to have the most up to data safety data sheets and upload original safety data sheets from suppliers in different formats.”
A Clear View into All Chemical Products On Site
The software solution was quickly implemented and approximately 1,000 employees are using it at Ekornes today, gaining greater insight into all the chemical products they have on site. This has been accomplished with greater SDS management as well as EcoOnline’s QR code offering. When employees scan the QR codes that correspond to that specific chemical or substance found at different locations on site or smaller bottles or containers holding the product, they can instantly gain access to all the necessary information relating to this substance.
Successful Substitution of Dangerous Substances
This has also helped team members complete daily tasks and has allowed the team to carry out substitutions of chemicals which were potentially dangerous. There are several different methods of controlling hazards in the workplace, and substitution is the second most recommended after complete elimination. This was done at least five times by the Ekornes team last year, to create a safer environment free of dangerous chemicals.
Implementation of Proper Controls to Protect Employees
Svein has also been able to easily develop risk assessments and manage exposures with the help of EcoOnline. The system helps streamline the risk assessment process as it uses automation and smart forms to create new templates or customise those that are already found within the system. This avoids any manual processes where Svein would need to find the SDS, read through it all, and fill out everything by hand. In terms of managing exposures, a specific module is found within the software that allows team members like Svein to digitally keep track of any chemical exposure employees have been subject to while working with a certain chemical product on site.
Today, Svein and his team have been able to create a safer workplace by efficiently managing over 940 chemical products in seven different locations. They also easily maintain compliance with regulations with access to EcoOnline’s extensive database of safety data sheets which are regularly updated with the latest versions.
Elevate Your Chemical Management Approach Today
"With the help of EcoOnline, we have better control over our safety data sheets and what kind of chemicals we have. This makes risk assessments and substitutions much easier, which has helped us enhance safety at Ekornes,” Svein mentioned.
“Distributing safety data sheets to individual departments has also become much easier and more effective, so everyone always has access to the latest safety data sheets and information on the chemicals they are using and the hazards to watch out for."