How steel industries are using animation for SOPs?

Try and picture a world where operating procedures don’t exist. A world where car manufacturers don’t have standardized procedures for QA and maintenance crews fail to follow strict checklists while inspecting an aircraft. You wouldn’t want to ride that car, nor be a passenger on that plane, right? Yet this is the reality of many organizations – either completely lacking SOPs or completely ignoring them due to their outdated nature.

No wonder your steel industry relies on SOPs as they drive most of your business processes for the years ahead. And if one opts for learning and understanding them, there are learning methods that provide assistance. Animation training videos allow the subject-matter to be opened up, allowing for a better reception and intuitive understanding to develop layer by layer framing of messages, making the content easy to grasp. Watch this video first –


So, now, having mentioned about animation, if you really think that SOPs alone can stand as a substitute for training and communicating the messages to your audience, you might need to rethink. Not sure? Read ahead.

Before we dive deep into understanding the need for SOPs in the steel industry, let us put light on two steel industry accidents that reinforces its essence. Primarily in India, one is based in Bhilai steel plant in Chhattisgarh and other in the Vishakhapatnam steel plant in Seemandhara, both having years 2018 and 2021 respectively.

  1.   The accident at the Bhilai plant happened because of a blast in the gas cleaning plant area. Blast furnace gas is produced at a melted iron-making unit called blast furnace. This waste gas is poisonous, containing a mixture of carbon monoxide (26 per cent) and hydrogen (4 per cent); nitrogen and carbon dioxide make up the rest. As it is energy rich gas, it is collected from the top of the blast furnace and water cooled and cleaned in the gas cleaning plant.

The cleaned gas is used as fuel in other steel making units. This is one of the critical areas in a steel plant where chances of accidental release of the poisonous gas mixture are high. Water pipeline connected to the gas cleaning plant had ruptured, which released water and poisonous waste gas in the environment and resulted in the mishap.

  1.   And if we talk about the Vishakhapatnam steel industry incident, as per the initial reports, the incident occurred when there was minor blast in blast furnace – 2, Krishna, after two tuyeres were jammed. This led to the spillage of hot metal onto the shop floor.

If we talk about the basic goals of the management in the steel industry, the aim at the simplest remains ‘The avoidance, prevention, and improvement of the adverse outcomes stemming from the processes of the plant.’

What safety professionals in the industry need to ponder over is to treat this simple definition as a starting point for a deeper involvement. Deeper involvements include preparing the workers and the management within to adopt a view where safety is viewed as an ability to anticipate and effectively respond to hazards and difficulties.

To aid in this vision, SOPs play their part.

Consider the intensity of the environment in the steel industry – you will find high road hazards, coke oven hazards such as heat, dust, smoke, moving equipment, chemicals, fire and explosion, sinter plant, blast furnace hazards such as liquid metal and slag, moving equipment and locomotives, steel melting shops, rolling mills, thermal power plants and material handling.

It would be correct to say that to manage all these, EHS personnel within rely on precision, consistency and rigor and create a culture where quality and safety objectives are transparent.

Importance of SOPs

The three ‘E’s emphasize the importance of SOPs in the steel industry, that include –

  •         Ensure consistency and standardize processes to enjoy work predictability in their work environment
  •         Ease in replication and organized growth helps track productivity at each site
  •         Enhance performance management to communicate deficiencies during reviews

Animation videos allows the workforce to distinguish the different threads and themes for the SOP trainings – the gamified environments develop peculiar interests wherein the audiences are warmed up. Core learning is getting the due pertinence with the effective explanatory voiceovers and motion graphics.

The primary challenge in the SOPs remain memory and knowing ‘how to perform a task.’ – that further runs into on-ground logical challenges. When an industry adopts a visual way to presenting the core elements, the workforce gets the feel for the task before actually picking up the tool.

Instead of a person spending few minutes on continuously reading an SOP and trying to figure out how a process is performed, why not use an animation video as an add-on telling the same story but in a visually appealing manner? This is all totally possible with animation as, again, they’re customizable, engaging and simple.

Have you ever thought about using animation videos to explain your SOPs? Do you use them now? Let us know! We would love to hear from you!


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