ISO 45001 – Setting the standard for occupational health and safety

Here is a shocking statistic: according to the International Labor Organization over 7600 people die each day from work-related accidents or disasters. That totals to 2.78 million per year. ISO 45001 was established to help reduce this statistic. Employers carry the burden of occupational injuries which can result in losses from early retirements, staff absence, and rising insurance premiums. ISO 45001 helps to reduce this burden by providing a framework for improving employee safety, reducing workplace risks, and creating better, safer working conditions across the world.

History of ISO 45001

Before the release of ISO 45001 businesses relied on OHSAS 18001 for workplace safety guidelines. The standard was developed with OHSAS in mind along with the International Labor Organization’s ILO-OSH Guidelines. A committee of occupational health and safety experts and followers of other management system approaches put the standard together to ensure the standard covers everything workplace safety related. ISO 45001 was introduced in 2018 to the standards world, and now organizations are adopting the guidelines and looking to get certified.

Benefits of ISO 45001

When an organization adopts ISO 45001, they are putting into place an occupational health and safety management system. It helps the organization manage its OH&S risks and improve its OH&S performance by creating and implementing policies related to workplace health and safety. The key benefits of implementing ISO 45001 include:

  • Reduction of workplace incidents
  • Reduced work absences and employee turnover which results in increased productivity
  • Reduced cost of insurance premiums
  • Creation of a culture of health and safety where employees take ownership of their OH&S
  • A reinforced commitment of leadership to proactively improve OH&S performance
  • A way to meet legal and regulatory requirements
  • Enhanced reputation
  • Improved staff morale

Integrating and Adopting ISO 45001

ISO 45001 shares the same high-level structure and same core text, terms, and definitions as other ISO standards like ISO 9001 and ISO 14001. With this structure, it is easy for businesses which already use ISO to implement ISO 45001 alongside their other standards.

Organizations looking to adopt ISO 45001 can do a few things to get started:

  1. Perform an analysis of your organization’s context that is relevant to OH&S and any internal or external factors that might impact your business.
  2. Establish a scope of the system, keeping in mind what you would like your system to achieve.
  3. Set OH&S policies and objectives.
  4. Define the time frame of when you want to implement your system and plan how to meet it.
  5. Determine any gaps in competence or resources that need to be fixed before applying the standard.

Get Help with ISO

Cavendish Scott has been helping organizations with ISO implementation for over 35 years. Whether your organization is OHSAS certified or looking to add an OH&S component to your current ISO standard Cavendish Scott can assist your organization in getting there. Reach out to us so we can help your organization set its standard in workplace health and safety.