PIC September 2023 Blog

Enhancing Pipeline Safety Management Systems

Pipeline safety is paramount in the energy industry, and ensuring the effectiveness of Pipeline Safety Management Systems (PSMS) is crucial. In this blog post, we will explore three essential aspects of PSMS: Cultural Assessments, Public Awareness, and Stakeholder Engagement. These elements collectively contribute to a robust safety culture within pipeline operations.

Cultural Assessments: Fostering a Culture of Safety

Cultural assessments are instrumental in gauging the safety culture within pipeline operations. They provide critical insights into stakeholder engagement and the application of quality management principles. By employing the Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle, which is integral to PSMS, organizations can assess their safety culture effectively.

Why Perform a Cultural Assessment to Support Pipeline Safety?

  • Cultural assessments reveal the degree to which quality management principles are integrated into the organization’s culture, which is crucial for preventing incidents.
  • Safety culture comprises both Personnel Safety and Asset Safety aspects.
  • Personnel safety culture focuses on individual compliance with safety procedures.
  • Asset safety culture influences risk management by addressing systemic quality management failures.
  • Assessments identify areas where corrective actions are needed, leading to improved safety culture.

Implementing a Pipeline Safety Cultural Assessment:

  • Evaluate stakeholder engagement levels through survey responses to measure safety culture perceptions.
  • Monitor the number of safety issues reported to gauge operational risk.
  • Continuously assess and refine corrective actions to improve safety culture.
  • Analyze assessment results to track the maturity of the PSMS over time.

Digitizing Public Awareness: Engaging Stakeholders Effectively

Public Awareness programs are essential components of Stakeholder Engagement within PSMS. Traditionally, these programs have lacked engagement due to ineffective communication methods. However, digital approaches offer a solution to enhance engagement and gather valuable input for safer operations.

Digitizing Public Awareness Programs for Pipeline Operators:

  • Replace paper mailings with digital notifications for efficient, measurable communication.
  • Utilize tools like QR codes, online messaging, and questionnaires to gauge engagement and understanding.
  • Schedule community meetings through online calendars to foster two-way communication.
  • Extend Public Awareness efforts to various stakeholder groups, including the general public, excavators, emergency responders, and public officials.

Stakeholder Engagement: An Essential Element of PSMS

Stakeholder Engagement is a core element of PSMS, as outlined in API 1173. Yet, many operators face challenges in implementing effective engagement due to a lack of integrated systems and tools.

Advancing Pipeline SMS Through Stakeholder Engagement:

  • Optimize Stakeholder Engagement to support operational effectiveness and safety.
  • Set up an integrated Program Management system to measure and document engagement across all PSMS elements.
  • Achieve continuous improvement by recording, tracking, and managing two-way communication.
  • Utilize software tools like Program Stakeholder Engagement Communications (pSEc) to facilitate feedback submission, corrective actions, and information sharing.
  • Measure the impact of improvements on safety culture through effective Stakeholder Engagement.

Facilitate PSMS Improvement Using P.I. Confluence Tools

pSEc (Program Stakeholder Engagement Communications) is a configurable mobile application for communication and information exchange that enables you to engage with stakeholders. With pSEc, you’re able to communicate with the targeted audience by role, geographic location, or other demographics. Stakeholders have the opportunity to engage with the content and provide responses or feedback – which allows you to measure your audience’s reaction and level of engagement. Is the message getting through? Does your audience understand the message and its impacts? 

Key Features of pSEc

  • Improved messaging: Advance beyond cookie-cutter, stereotypical surveys by asking the right questions in the right way.
  • Specific targeting: Identify the right stakeholders you need to communicate with.
  • Local targeting: Set up geographic, role-based, or domain-based communication.
  • Measurement of Understanding: Use simple, message-specific, short questionnaires to determine how many of the key takeaways were retained.
  • Utilize KPIs: Track the results using our Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) dashboard.
  • Run Reports: Measure the responses in a format tailored to your specifications.
  • Route the findings: Capture suggestions, build feedback loops with stakeholders, and send feedback throughout the operation.
  • Guide next steps: Utilize the findings to provide direction for continuous improvement.

Enhancing Pipeline Safety Management Systems involves cultural assessments, digitizing Public Awareness programs, and optimizing Stakeholder Engagement. These elements collectively contribute to a culture of safety, reduce risk, and support continuous improvement in pipeline operations. To achieve these goals, consider utilizing tools like pSEc and embracing digital communication methods to ensure the safety of people, communities, and the environment. Gathering stakeholder input is streamlined and easier to review and analyze. You’ll be able to make informed decisions and take action on potential risks more effectively, and all of this combined leads to the proper execution of the ‘Act’ step in the Plan.Do.Check.Act. cycle

We invite you to request a free demo of pSEc. See for yourself how we help operators improve their stakeholder engagement and outreach efforts.


– Contact us today to schedule a demo of pSEc. We look forward to discussing the capabilities of the software with you and your team.

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