How to use AI in a day-to-day health and safety role


How to use AI in a day-to-day health and safety role

Posted on 09 July 2024

Integrating AI into daily Health and Safety Operations.

Safety Tech and AI have created some amazing tools for the health and safety profession to utilise and continue to improve health and safety performance. From wearable technology and virtual reality to drones, the technology and potential are immense. However, there are considerable barriers preventing many safety professionals from adopting this technology and embedding it in their day-to-day activities. These challenges include cost, implementation time, and skills gaps within the organisation to procure and set up.

There is no doubt that costs and barriers will reduce which will allow more access to these technologies overtime. However, there are currently available, powerful technologies which are available to all and can be used immediately with little or no cost to health and safety professionals. They are very user-friendly and can add immediate value to the day-to-day operations of any health and safety professional.

This is a hot topic for health and safety professionals and at the recent NEBOSH Conference, Matt Powell-Howard, Head of Product Development at NEBOSH, gave an excellent overview of what he believes are the current, low or no cost, easily accessible opportunities for health and safety professionals.

This is critical to really get on the radar as according to a report by the World Economic Forum, by 2025, AI will have displaced 75 million jobs globally but will have created 133 million new jobs. There is no doubt that change is coming, and with such a critical role that health and safety professionals undertake, it is essential that any benefits from AI are utilised.

So, what are the opportunities in day-to-day health and safety? What are the easy wins that health and safety professionals can use in the here and now without a huge IT team implementing a massive project plan costing millions?

As Matt mentioned, some of these tools might be right in front of you without you knowing, often already connected to your Microsoft account. The key tools Matt suggested as great starting places are ChatGPT, Teachermatic, Perplexity, and Microsoft’s Copilot.

 The big question is: what can these actually do for me? The answers are endless, but some key places to start include: 

Assisting with any creative process

Think of anything you are creating in the workplace, from health and safety training materials and campaign posters to engagement emails and social media posts. ChatGPT can be a great tool to generate ideas and get you moving in the right direction with speed.

Searching for information

New tools are being developed continuously that help search for and identify key information, which will assist a health and safety professional. This includes the latest legislation, standards, or guidance.


Such a critical element for any health and safety professional—how is this created and implemented? Where is the information gathered and presented? There are also great features in AI that can create images in seconds, serving as excellent visual aids for training.

Data, data, data

Health and safety is immersed in data. AI technology, such as ChatGPT, can generate graphs, display data, look for trends and patterns, and provide commentary for data reporting. Input the data and ask it to write a summary.

Other uses include writing award submissions, generating job descriptions, creating interview questions, summarising documents, crafting reports, coming up with ideas for emails, ways to engage Gen X on health and safety in your business, and writing presentations—the list goes on!

Health and safety is such a broad role, it is impossible for anyone to be an expert at designing posters through to knowing every element of upcoming legislation and developing cutting-edge training programmes. Collaboration has always been important with other areas in the business; however, these tools give you a head start.

The common mantra of many when describing the use of AI is that it ‘gets you off the starting blocks’ — use it as a tool to start and get the ball rolling rather than as a finished product. You can continually refine what you get out with the prompts you put in. Get great at this, and the information you get out will be better and evolve over time.​

As Matt quoted at the event:

“Artificial intelligence is not a substitute for human intelligence; it is a tool to amplify human creativity and ingenuity.” — Fei-Fei Li, Co-Director of the Stanford Institute for Human-Centred Artificial Intelligence.

You will always need to check for accuracy, as some AI tools only use data and information from 2022, for example. There are also questions around bias in the system, which need to be closely monitored. However, AI and Chat GPT are here to stay so the sooner the health and safety professional learns how it can help the role, the bigger impact it will have.

James Irwin is a Director at Irwin and Colton, a specialist health and safety recruitment company.


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