ISO 45001:2018 - Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems - Requirements with guidance for use

To gain customers and employees confidence, you must have a robust Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems (OHAS) in place. By being ISO 45001 certified, you can prevent work-related injury and ill health, safeguarding the interests of relevant stakeholders.

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ISO 45001:2018 – Occupational health and safety management systems – Requirements with guidance for use (OH&S)

Our experienced team of in-house ISO consultants can plan and guide you through this process smoothly, covering critical areas for your company, as follows, to ensure you are well-established.

What is ISO 45001 certification?

ISO 45001:2018 – Occupational health and safety management systems – Requirements with guidance for use, is an international standard for occupational health and safety (OH&S) management system.

The standard specifies requirements and advises on its usage to enable organisations to provide safe and healthy workplaces by preventing work-related injury and ill-health and proactively improving OH&S performance.

Why do you require ISO 45001 certification?

According to the International Labour Organization, over 300,000 and 55,000,000 people had experienced fatal and non-fatal occupational injuries between 2010 – 2020 due to occupational accidents or diseases.

Developed by the ISO committee of occupational health & safety experts to save millions of lives each year, it is an international standard for occupational health and safety that aims to address the risks and hazards found in workplaces that may affect the performance and well-being of the workplace environment and employees.

This standard places a proactive and preventative emphasis on risk-control factors by identifying and assessing the likelihood and severity of hazards in your workplace. It also reduces the costs incurred from occupational accidents and injuries.

ISO 45001 certification is also required to fulfil any legal requirements or other relevant requirements.

Benefits of getting ISO 45001 certified

The ISO 45001 standard can improve occupational health within an organisation by creating a safe, healthy and comfortable work environment for workers, contractors, visitors and the surrounding community.

It also provides a good image for your organisation, depicting it as one that pays attention to and maintains occupational health and safety in the organisation.

Who needs to comply with ISO 45001?

Compliance with the ISO 45001 Occupational health and safety management system is typically needed for jobs that might pose a concern to employees’ health and safety due to the nature of the occupation. For example, organisations in the construction industry require workers to carry out certain high-risk acts (E.g. Working on high structures, using complex equipment etc.).

This may be potentially dangerous if no safety measures are in place. Thus, compliance with the ISO 45001 Occupational health and safety management system is crucial to ensure the safety and wellbeing of the employees.

How to prepare for ISO 45001 certification?

ISO 45001:2018 – Occupational health and safety management system certification can be prepared by engaging Stendard’s ISO consultancy services.

With our expertise, Stendard can help your organisation by providing specific consulting and training services on the ISO 45001:2018 – Occupational health and safety management systems. We can help you through your full certification or compliance process to various ISO standards by assisting in the establishment, implementation, improvement and simplification of your business processes as well as the training of your organisation.

Transitioning from OHSAS 18001 to ISO 45001

The following are suggested steps that your organisation can take in transitioning to the ISO 45001 standard:

Planning the transition process

If your organisation is OHSAS 18001 certified, it is highly recommended to communicate with the Certification Body, discuss the program required to upgrade to ISO 45001, and prepare for the transition audit.

However, suppose your organisation has never implemented an occupational health and safety management system before. In that case, it is recommended that you immediately implement the new standard in your organisation.

Preparation of system transition

Your organisation is advised to appoint a party who has the experience, is competent and is responsible for the transition process. This responsible party shall understand the requirements in both standards, take full responsibility for the transition process and work closely with the designated support team.

As a first step, your organisation must understand the new requirements. This understanding process can be done independently or with the support of a competent trainer. This will lead your organisation to identify and analyse the gap between the two standards in your organisational activities.

When transitioning, you need to pay attention to the following essential points:

  • Conducting gap analysis to identify which processes of the existing management system need to be adjusted, both in documentation and implementation.
  • Analysing interested parties (individuals or organisations that can affect your organisation’s activities) and internal and external issues that may affect occupational health and safety.
  • Identifying the training that needs to be conducted to support the transition to the new system.
  • Defining the scope of the system.
  • Planning of the specific implementation plan schedule

Why choose Stendard's ISO consultancy services for your needs?

Stendard can provide you with a one-stop consultancy service. At Stendard, we believe that quality is everyone’s business because it takes a team to consistently deliver and uphold excellent standards that build confidence with customers, partners and the community.

We are a regulatory consultancy and technology company that helps businesses implement international standards, streamline business processes across the organisation, and accelerate global growth.

With our vast range of consulting services, feel free to contact us, and we at Stendard will be glad to assist.

The importance of an ISO certification

The importance of an ISO certification
The International Standard provides guidance and help organisations to apply a common approach or concept of Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA) and risk-based thinking to achieve compliance and continuous improvement. The PDCA model is an iterative process that enables organsations to establish policy or objectives, implement processes to deliver results, monitor and measure performance, report and evaluate results and also take corrective actions to achieve continuous improvement.

The International Standard contains the scope, context and requirements for any types of management system standards. Organisations that wish to show commitment and demonstrate compliance can use the requirements to assess conformity. They can seek further confirmation of its conformance by pursuing certification of the management system by an external certification body.

ISO certification allows organisations to show prove of conformance to the requirements of any management system standards. It can help to demonstrate compliance to current and future statutory, industry and regulatory requirements, thereby gaining themselves recognition and competitive advantage through improving their branding/reputation and the confidence of the stakeholders, customers and business partners.

Training and Competency

Our team ensures the competency of your team regarding ISO 13485 standards and requirements

We include a combination of online training courses and in-person training to make sure everyone within your team understands the requirements of the medical devices’ regulations and ISO 13485 standards, as well as the application of your QMS processes and documents.

Frequently Asked Questions

The main differences are as follows:

1. Structure

ISO 45001 adopts a High-Level Structure – Annex SL (previously was ISO Guide 83) to simplify the process of implementing and integrating several management systems such as ISO 9001 and 14001 with consistent language and sub-clauses in your organisation.

2. Focus on organisation and its context

In the latter standard, a strong focus is placed on the organisation and its context. In developing an OH&S management system, your organisation shall consider internal and external issues, needs and expectations of interested parties (the government, customers, suppliers, employees, shareholders and the surrounding community).

 3. Appointment of Management Representative

In the OHSAS 18001, top management appoints a management representative responsible for ensuring the effectiveness of the OH&S management system. However, in ISO 45001, the responsibility and accountability for the OH&S management system lie with the top management.

Top management may delegate the authority to report the OH&S performance to a member of another top management or a designated individual.

4. Participation and consultation of non-managerial employees

ISO 45001 encourages employees’ participation and consultation, including non-managerial employees, in developing an OH&S management system. Meanwhile, the former standard does not address this matter.

5. Opportunity and Risk Assessment

Under ISO 45001, your organisation is required to identify, assess and control OH&S risks and opportunities related to the organisation’s sustainability. Whereas in OHSAS 18001, only identification and control of OH&S risks are required.

6. Occupational Health and Safety Management in Procurement process

ISO 45001 requires your organisation to control occupational health and safety risks in the procurement process. This includes outsourced contractors because suppliers of goods and services are factors that can affect the organisation’s OH&S performance.

The former standard does not explicitly require this.

7. Document & Record vs Documented Information

In OHSAS 18001, the focus is on maintaining your documents and records in implementing an occupational health and safety management system. However, in ISO 45001, your documents and records are removed and replaced by a new term, documented information.

ISO 45001 does not require your documents to be in the form of procedures, hard copies or soft copies. Still, it allows this documented information in any format or media and any source.

8. Process Approach

ISO 45001 is dynamic in all clauses and uses a process approach. At the same time, OHSAS 18001 is based on a procedural approach that is more rigid and less dynamic.

ISO 45001 Singapore does not exist. Instead, ISO 45001 is an international standard adopted by organisations worldwide to provide safe and healthy workplaces for their employees by reducing the potential risks of work-related injury and ill health.

According to the International Labour Organization, over 300,000 and 55,000,000 people had experienced fatal and non-fatal occupational injuries between 2010 – 2020 due to occupational accidents or diseases.

Developed by the ISO committee of occupational health & safety experts to save millions of lives each year, it is an international standard for occupational health and safety that aims to address the risk and hazards found in your workplace that may affect the performance and well-being of your workplace your employees.

This standard places a proactive and preventative emphasis on risk-control factors by identifying and assessing the likelihood and severity of hazards in your workplace. It also reduces the costs that may be incurred from occupational accidents and injuries.

The new ISO 45001:2018 standard was published on 12 March 2018 and entered into force. The transition period for this new standard is three years from the date of publication.

This means that certifications issued following the former standard will automatically lose their validity after three years from when the new ISO 45001:2018 standard was released – setting the deadline of March 2021.

Exceptions might be given to businesses affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, allowing you a final extension until the end of September 2021. 

ISO 45001:2018 – Occupational health and safety management systems – Requirements with guidance for use, is an International standard for occupational health and safety (OH&S) management system that specifies requirements and gives advice for its use, to enable organisations to provide safe and healthy workplaces by preventing work-related injury and ill health, as well as by proactively improving its OH&S performance.

The OHSAS 18001 was released in 1999 as a bridge to fill the occupational health and safety gap and was designed to be compatible with ISO 9001 and 14001 standards. The first released version was based on several references, including BS 8800:1996 – Guide to Occupational health and safety management system, and formulated from some of the best practices and schemes at the time.

In 2018, the new Health & Safety standard ISO 45001 was released to bring all major management systems under ISO.

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