There are many reasons why your company should look to meet the ISO 45001 standard. It was designed to provide a benchmark standard for the health and safety best practices of a workplace. It gives a structured framework that a company can use to reduce risks, improve safety and bring about a higher level of well-being for employees and visitors to the company. There is no minimum size of company as the whole framework has been designed to fit into any existing systems used. While there is no compulsory need to get the ISO 45001 certification for your workplace, it is recommended if you are looking to use best practices and be mindful of safety.
How do you implement ISO 45001?
The first stage is to prepare a gap analysis. This enables you to see what you already do that meets the criteria and highlights where you need to make changes. Documentation is critical here, as when you are assessed for your certificate, the person auditing needs to see how the process was implemented. You should then create any new policies and procedures that the gap analysis identified the need for and make sure that they are communicated across your organisation. Once you are confident you meet the criteria, you can apply for your certification or just use the framework to benefit the company. However, if you have gone that far, the certificate is a natural step and something you can be proud of.
How do you get certified?
To gain official recognition that your company meets the ISO 45001 standards, you need to be externally assessed by the Registered Certification Body. But, before you arrange to have your assessment, it is recommended that you get a third party to check your preparations. This saves you from missing out because something was not quite up to standard, and by using someone not connected to the company, there is no bias, and you get an honest review. When you are ready, the official auditor can come in and make their assessment. You may receive some nonconformity pointers which you need to use to improve, but assuming these are minor and everything else is in order, you will receive your certification. After that, you have an annual surveillance audit and, after three years, a re-certification audit. You can continue to retain your certificate on this three-year schedule.
What are the benefits of ISO 45001 certification?
As well as generally improving the health and safety of your company it has been shown to benefit staff morale. If workers feel safer and are safer, then absences are reduced, and productivity is increased. In turn, this improves the reputation of the company with your customers and stakeholders, as well as ensuring you are meeting regulatory and legal requirements that pertain to your industry. The guidance is not specific to any one industry, and everyone can benefit from the framework. It can also reduce any claims made against you, and this reduces your insurance premium cost. Overall it makes a lot of sense to become ISO 45001 compliant.