Occupational health and safety management systems aim to underpin the creation of safe and healthy workplaces.
A well planned and implemented Occupational Health and Safety management System is key to ensuring good health and safety performance. Our Chartered Safety and Health Practitioners will guide you through the process toward developing and implementing a robust OH&S Management System helping your business strive towards occupational safety and health excellence.
What is a health and safety management system?
The Occupational Health and Safety Management System provides a framework within which organisations establish, implement and keep under review their health and safety policies, procedures, protocols and documentation.
A typical OH&S system will be based upon an iterative loop: Policy, Organising, Planning, Monitoring, Audit and Review. It’s also common to see Plan, Do, Check, Act and this latter approach is advocated by the Health and Safety Executive. The more times organisations work around the loop, the better their occupational health and safety performance will be.
Types of OH&S Management Systems
There is no statutory requirement to implement a formal health and safety management system and even where you do, this does not need a formal certification or accreditation. But by employing one of the well known standards, organisations can demonstrate to their stakeholders that they take their health and safety obligations very seriously.
Some of the better known standards are listed below:
HSG65 is actually the document code of the Health & Safety Executives guide to Managing for Health and safety. This guidance explains the process of implementing adequate health and safety arrangements with a basic occupational health and safety management system.
BS OHSAS 18001
BS OHSAS 18001 was a framework for an occupational health and safety management system. Although its still in use by a few organisations it has been superceeded by ISO 45001 and organisations will need to upgrade to ISO 45001 by March 2021.
ISO 45001 is the latest Occupational Health and Safety Management System standard from the International Standards Organisation. It’t built upon the same common framework as other management standards including ISO 9001 and ISO 14001.
Safety management system fundamentals: ‘Plan, Do, Check and Act’
The Health and Safety Executive’s guidance on managing for health and safety has moved away from using the POPMAR (Policy, Organising, Planning, Measuring performance, Auditing and Review) model to a ‘Plan, Do, Check, Act’ approach.
Benefits of a health and safety management system
- Reduction of workplace incidents
- Reduced absenteeism and staff turnover, leading to increased productivity
- Reduced cost of insurance premiums
- Creation of a health and safety culture, whereby employees are encouraged to take an active role in their own OH&S
- Reinforced leadership commitment to proactively improve OH&S performance
- Ability to meet legal and regulatory requirements
- Enhanced reputation
- Improved staff morale
How to implement an occupational health and safety (OHS) management system
The implementation of an OH&S Management System will require the full commitment and support from senior management.
How do I get started?
If you are considering implementing a formal health and safety management system such as ISO 45001, here are a few tips to get you started:
- Perform an analysis of your organization’s context that is relevant to OH&S (such as interested parties) as well as the internal and external factors that might impact your business.
- Establish the scope of the system, considering what you would like your management system to achieve.
- Set your OH&S policy and objectives.
- Define the time frame in which you wish to implement your system and plan how to achieve it.
- Determine any competence and/or resource gaps that need addressing before you can implement the standard.
What are the benefits of our consultancy service?
Our experienced certified practitioners have substantial experience in the development, implementation and ongoing review of OH&S Management Systems.
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