Many organizations benefit from a variety of administrative and technical support to help line management and professionals deal with their day-to-day safety needs. If the available guidance has informational gaps, affected personnel/groups will tend to develop their own strategies and practices to deal with each situation in a way that works for them. However, there are times when the formal and informal safety information systems are inadequate to deal with technical, administrative, or compliance requirements because specialized knowledge is needed.
The decision to use a process safety consultant to fill information gaps is an important one that many managers, engineers, and chemists need to make at various stages in their career. The purpose of this article is to present guidelines to facilitate this decision making process.