Ansell Healthcare Europe N.V.

From glove selection to productivity gains: Ansell launches Guardian

GuardianSM is a registered service mark of Ansell Ltd.
Brussels, 30 August 2007 - Ansell, a world leader in total hand protection solutions, announces the official launch of its GuardianSM consulting service for industrial production sites. This unique assessment methodology, focussed on selecting the most appropriate work gloves, helps multinationals to increase more than worker safety. GuardianSM helps companies to objectively standardise references, reduce purchasing costs, reduce product cost-of-use by extending wear and even increase worker productivity through wearing gloves better matched to the task at hand.

Injury frequency rates at a key European automotive OEM supplier dropped from 64 to 5 only months after implementing GuardianSM assessment recommendations. Another multinational benefited from a 27.4% cost reduction when inventory was reduced due to standardisation of references and longer-lasting gloves were selected. These and other conclusive results emerged from a pilot phase of 250 assessments carried out in 50 large European companies active in automotive, OEM, chemical, and metal fabrication. Ansell has decided to launch GuardianSM assessments on a large scale in Europe.

Mr. Herman in het Veld, Safety Manager of GE Plastics Europe, explains “As part of GE's global initiative on hand injury prevention, GE Plastics is using the GuardianSM methodology to define a GE-customised glove management programme which will be implemented across multiple sites and countries.” GE Plastics participated in the pilot phase and is planning to extend the GuardianSM assessment.

“GuardianSM is designed to improve worker safety, but selecting comfortable gloves fitting like a second skin and with the correct grip can significantly enhance worker performance. This in turn leads to higher company output.” explains Werner Heintz, Senior Vice-President and Regional Director Europe for Ansell Healthcare. “That’s why gloves should be seen not only as personal protection but as a tool to enhance productivity. A GuardianSM assessment can help large sites reach these objectives.”

The Ansell sales force was regularly confronted with world-class production facilities that were using the wrong glove for a given application in 8 out of 10 cases. Driven by a concern to address the safety implications of these mismatches, Ansell developed a software programme called SafetyNet™, coupled with a continuously updated dynamic database containing over 250 glove references.

The GuardianSM assessment begins with the analysis of each workstation; observations on the working practices are made and questions are also asked of the worker. Some 50 or so data points are entered per workstation analysed. The gloves in use are analysed in the following five areas: 1) comfort, which impacts worker acceptance, 2) grip, 3) mechanical performance, 4) chemical performance, and 5) heat requirements. The workstation requirements are also recorded and objectively analysed using the SafetyNet™ programme. Glove mismatches in any area may directly impact shop floor productivity.

GuardianSM experts contribute to formulating recommendations in a final report. They choose amongst a short list of appropriate gloves generated by SafetyNet™, selecting the most comfortable glove with a view to the client’s key priority. There are no compromises made as to essential mechanical safety, chemical safety, heat protection or grip requirements. Where the application’s needs are better met by another glove, Ansell includes recommendations for competitors’ gloves.

The GuardianSM assessment methodology and data have been optimised for workstation requirements in the following industries: automobile production, metal fabrication, automotive OEM and chemicals. For industries not covered, GuardianSM experts redirect clients to an Ansell representative who will offer personalised assistance to determine the most appropriate gloves for the applications in question (in certain cases Ansell salespersons are certified GuardianSM experts). The GuardianSM consulting service is available in all European countries; reports are generated in 13 languages. The assessment results are international, and can be used to compare and consolidate requirements on regional, national or global. Selected automotive producers have started sharing the results of their GuardianSM assessments with their insurers, and obtained reduced risk premiums.

Guardian experts will be available to answer any questions you may have at the Ansell stand Hall 6 Stand J31, during the A+A fair to be held in Düsseldorf, Germany from 18 to 21 September 2007.

GuardianSM is a registered service mark of Ansell Ltd.
GuardianSM is empowered by SafetyNet™
SafetyNet™ is a registered trademark of Ansell Ltd.

Note to editors:
A complete product sheet and high-resolution colour logos and images may be downloaded from http://www.anselleurope.com/industrial/index.cfm?pages=guardian_press&lang=EN

For more information about Guardian or about Ansell, please contact:

Wouter Piepers, Communications Director EMEA, tel: +32 2 528 75 68, cellular: +32 478 33 56 32, email: wpiepers@ansell.eu
David Staniforth, Director Consulting Services EMEA, tel +32 2 528 7485, cellular: +32 495 120 515, email: dstaniforth@eu.ansell.com

For companies interested in GuardianSM, please contact: www.ansellguardian.eu