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Global chemical compliance activities set to increase

Almost 60% of companies expect to expand their in-house regulatory compliance teams over the next five years to help manage increased demands, according to preliminary findings from this year’s Chemical Watch annual survey of chemical management and control activities. A further 60% say they will increase use of external service providers. Very few expect such activities to decrease.

The survey, due to close on 31 January 2013, looks at the global drivers and trends in chemical management and control. For the first time, it also assesses the career prospects, salaries and bonuses of chemical compliance professionals.

Highlights so far include:

Regulatory drivers and sector trends – an overwhelming 88% of survey participants cited REACH as the main global driver, followed by the EU CLP Regulation (66%), and other national schemes for the Globally Harmonized System (GHS) for chemicals classification and labelling (45% of respondents). Other drivers include the US TSCA inventory reporting requirements, biocides regulations and 27% say China’s new chemical notification (MEP order 7);

Careers and salary – respondents suggest that the use of chemical compliance staff within their organisations has expanded over the last year and will continue to expand over the next 12 months. As a career, chemical management and control professionals generally feel satisfied in their roles (59% of participants against 10% who are unsatisfied), and they generally believe that career progression prospects are good in the wider jobs market (63% saying so), but less so in their current employer (38%). The average global salary for chemical management and control professionals is €47,200 (US$63,100). The final results will show the variations in salaries across regions, industries, job function and age. In the chemical management and control sector, the average age of a professional is 45, and over 40% are female. Almost half of professionals have global responsibilities within their organisations.

Service provider usage – overall satisfaction levels with the work of service providers have decreased from 88% at the time of our first survey at the end of 2010, to 78% last year and 74% currently. There has also been a marked drop in satisfaction levels in many specific areas: for example, 55% of this year’s participants are satisfied with the availability of the service provider, compared with 70% in last year’s survey; and 63% are happy that their briefs are being met, down from 72% last year. At the lower end of the satisfaction rankings, only 33% of clients are satisfied with the prices charged by their service providers, compared with 41% last year.

Stuart Foxon, Chemical Watch operations director, said: "We have made it much easier to complete the survey this year and have therefore been able to add in a whole new section on careers and salaries. For the first time, the global chemical management and control community will have some very useful data on salaries, pay rises, bonus levels and much more. We now need as many participants in the survey as possible so that we can provide an accurate reflection of the profession, segmented as finely as possible."

Individuals participating in the survey will be entitled to a free copy of the results and the Chemical Watch Service Providers Guide 2013 when it is published in late Spring.

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