Strategic Focus: Succeeding In Wearables Pilot Projects

Published 16 August 2019 by Sarah Bloch & Steve Bolton &

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Executive Summary

Industrial wearable devices (or “wearables”) have proliferated over the last 15 years as technological improvements have increased their ease of use and affordability. Furthermore, the eradication of key adoption barriers for wearables, coupled with their broad application potential and improved value propositions, have facilitated the increased demand for these devices among corporate EHS managers. One of the challenges facing corporate EHS programmes, after they decide to employ wearables, is how to enhance the likelihood of effective adoption. Vague objectives, insufficient buy-in, data privacy concerns and complex industry or regional requirements are the key challenges experienced during wearables deployment. Firms are prioritizing pre-pilot planning and intra- and inter-firm communication to mitigate these risks and facilitate the successful implementation of wearable technology.

Table of contents

Corporate EHS Programmes Are Exploring Wearable Devices And The Value They Can Generate
EHS Decision-Makers Are Stimulating Demand For Industrial Wearables As Adoption Barriers Diminish

The Success Of Wearables Deployment Is Hinged Upon Pre-Pilot Planning And Effective Communication
Key Challenges Can Be Mitigated Through Effective Planning Prior To Pilot Commencement
Communication Between Core Stakeholder Groups Often Determines Whether A Pilot Is Successful

Best Practice For Wearables Pilot Projects Typically Follows A Four-Phase Approach

Table of figures

Figure 1. Tech Roadmap For EHS Technologies And Report Scope
Figure 2. Industrial Wearables Support Four EHS Use Cases
Figure 3. Prioritization Of Innovation In the EHS Function 
Figure 4. Adoption Of Emerging Technologies In 2019
Figure 5. Four-Phase Wearables Pilot Approach By (A) People, (B) Processes And (C) Technology

Organisations mentioned

Airsweb, BP, Cority, Kenzen, Lifebooster, Wearable Technologies

About the authors

Sarah Bloch


Sarah is an Analyst in the Verdantix EHS practice.  Her current research agenda focuses on emerging technology, trends and best practices across EHS analytics, industrial wearables and sustainability management. Prior to Verdantix, Sarah worked in strategy consulting and research for business, industry and the public sector in South Africa. Sarah holds a Bsc in Politics, Philosophy and Economics from the University of Cape Town.

Steve Bolton

Research Director

Steve leads the Verdantix EHS research practice, based out of our New York office. He has 25 years of experience advising on sustainability, EHS, circular economy, corporate social responsibility and other business value topics. Steve received a dual environmental science and public policy Bachelor's degree from The College of William and Mary, a Master of Environmental Management degree from Duke University, and an MBA degree from James Madison University.

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