The internationally recognised Occupational Health & Safety (OH&S) Management System Standard – ISO 45001, was introduced in March 2018 to replace, and expand upon the previous standard – OHSAS 18001.
ISO 45001 helps organisations to proactively identify and resolve potential risks, prevent work related illness and accidents and meet legal health and safety obligations that provide a safer workplace for everyone.
Organisations who were previously using OHSAS 18001, had a transition period in which they were able to migrate their occupational health and safety management system over to ISO 45001. Going forward OHSAS 18001 is no longer available and going forward the new, improved and more effective ISO 45001 is the internationally recognised standard for occupational health and safety.
What is ISO 45001?
ISO 45001 is a rigorous international standard for health and safety that is applicable to business of all sizes, industry and operational scope.
The standard enables businesses to integrate certain health and safety aspects through their respective Occupational Health Systems and ensures that specific requirements are met in order to be compliant with all relevant health and safety legislation.
ISO 45001 certification provides the vital framework, structure and information that businesses need to improve their occupational health and safety performance in order to prevent workplace injury and health issues and improve the overall wellbeing and happiness of its employees.
About ISO 45001 Certification
ISO 45001 certification helps organisations to establish an effective OH&S management system which in turn allows them to better manage risks, prevent accidents and meet the legal requirements needed to keep their employees safe.
Executing the requirements can be a challenging, time consuming and demanding process which is where JR Consultants can help. Our team are experts in ISO and provide businesses with the guidance, knowledge and advice the need to identify the objectives and processes they need to implement and address.
Following the implementation of the required ISO 45001 standards, a certified body is required to perform an official audit which allows them to determine if the organisation is fully compliant with the requirements of the standard. If successful, the result is ISO 45001 certification or being ‘ISO 45001 certified.
Certification lasts for 3 years and will be subject to mandatory audits every 12 months to ensure that the business remains compliant. At the end of the 3 years, the business will be required to complete a reassessment audit in order to become recertified to the standard.
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What are the Differences Between OHSAS 18001 and ISO 45001?
OH&S is no longer considered a ‘stand-alone’ but rather an integral part of running a safe, effective and sustainable organisation. Although OHSAS 18001 was a beneficial standard, like most things it required updating over time in order to be suitable for the modern day work environments which is why it was replaced with ISO 45001. Although both the standards do share a certain amount of ‘DNA and similarities, they differ in their approach.
Some of the main differences between OHSAS 18001 and ISO 45001 are;
- OHSAS 18001 was more aimed at managing OH&S hazards whereas ISO 45001 focuses on the interaction between the organisation and its business environment.
- OHSAS 18001 was more procedure-based whereas ISO 45001 is process-based
- OHSAS 18001 dealt exclusively with risk, ISO 45001 considers both risk and opportunities
- OHSAS 18001 did not include the views of interested parties but ISO 45001 does
Although there is without doubt a significant shift in the way that health and safety management is perceived, the overall aim of ISO 45001 has not altered from that of 18001 – to ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of those involved with the organisation by reducing risks and improving overall working conditions.
ISO 45001 Requirements
In order to meet the required standards of ISO 45001, businesses need to successfully implement the suggested framework, processes, practices and systems.
Working on the principles of ‘Plan – Do – Act – Check’ also referred to as the PDAC cycle, this concept is a vital undertaking to ensure the continuous evaluating and improving of processes and procedures at every stage.
The standard requires that not only OH&S risks be addressed and controlled but that the OH&S management system itself takes a risk based approach. This helps to ensure that it is being continuously improved on to effectively meet and adapt to the organisations ever evolving context.
Is it Mandatory for Businesses to Have ISO 45001?
In the UK, businesses are not required by law to implement ISO 45001 or other similar management standards, however it is considered to be an advantageous endeavour across many levels. This international hallmark of quality helps organisations to drastically improve their occupational health and safety offerings with a world class risk management system.
For companies that are looking to reach new markets, work internationally or demonstrate compliance with global standards of workplace health and safety, implementing ISO 45001 could prove to be extremely useful.
What are the Benefits of ISO 45001?
ISO 45001 is suitable for organisations of all types, size and across numerous sectors and industries. It is ideal for those looking to boost or protect their reputation, improve their health and safety risk management and increase productivity.
Some of the benefits of ISO 45001 can include;
- A safer working environment for employees
- Commitment to safety enhances company reputation with new business, customers and staff
- Allows you to reach new potential markets previously out of reach
- Encourages employees across all levels of hierarchy to engage and actively participate in OH&S matters
- Decreases the amount of staff absences, illness, work related health issues and staff turnover
- Insurance premiums are often lower which means cost savings
- Increased productivity from a safer, happier and more efficient work place
- A shift from being reactive to proactive means a more prepared company that is able to better handle issues should arise
- Fewer risks which results in fewer accidents, less downtime, disruptions and improved overall safety
- Encourages accountability and management involvement
- Boost confidence of stakeholders
- Stand out as industry leaders and gain a competitive advantage over other companies
- Staff will feel more motivated from following clear objectives
The full benefits of integrating and implementing ISO 45001 standards within an organisation can be significant and help businesses to secure a clear pathway to a more successful future.
ISO 45001 Certification Consultation Services
At JR Consultants we work with our clients from the start to help provide clear, consistent and knowledgeable guidance throughout process. Our experts are on hand to help you navigate the minefields of complicated paperwork, documentation and information as well as providing the support needed to successfully implement the required systems make the improvements needed to meet the standards.
Our team of professional ISO 45001 consultants are extremely passionate about helping your business to be the best it can possibly be and achieve the recognition it deserves. We provide clients with a straight forward, cost effective path to ISO 45001 certification which can help to enhance and improve their business and open up a world of opportunities.
If you would like to learn more about ISO 45001 for your business then contact JR Consultants today.
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