Health and Safety Audits
Havio provide our clients with a comprehensive, systematic review of their organisation’s current level of management measured against their existing management system and existing legislation. Our audits will provide you with a clear indication of where on the spectrum you are in terms of compliance, and where best to focus your attention and resources.
So, what exactly is a “Health and Safety Audit”?
Health and Safety Audits form part of the monitoring and reviewing techniques used by organisations in measuring performance. A Health and Safety Audit subjects each area of an organisation’s activities to a systematic, critical examination with the object of minimising loss and aims to disclose both the strengths and weaknesses. Audits generally need to be measured against a regulated criterion such as a system, policy or processes. Every component of the total management system for Health and Safety is included.
Other categories include Safety Survey, Safety Inspection, Safety Tour and Safety Sampling. They are not all the same in terms of how they are carried out and the approach required, including time.
The general aims of a Health and Safety Audit are to:
- Assess strengths and weaknesses
- Assess performance of the system within the organisation
- Assess compliance with legal obligations
How long should an audit take?
This depends on a number of factors such as the size of the organisation, locations and activities undertaken. A small, low risk organisation could be visited, staff interviewed, documentation reviewed, and a tour of the premises completed in a day. A large multi-sited organisation with medium risks could take a week to audit thoroughly.
What is the difference between an audit and an inspection?
An inspection is a routine scheduled inspection of the physical conditions within a unit or department which may be undertaken by Health and Safety Professionals or employees. An example would be a construction site or factory. Audits are more system based than physical conditions.
How often should we be auditing?
Again, this depends on several factors, but an annual audit shows a commitment to monitoring and reviewing performance of a system.
Who should do the audit?
A Health and Safety Audit should be completed by someone, or a group of individuals, who possess the necessary skills, knowledge and experience including training and qualifications. A sound understanding of the principles of Health and Safety Management and their application, as well as technical knowledge on hazard control and management are essential.
What outcomes should I expect from an audit?
The audit should include observations, (both positive and areas for improvement) requirements, (legal) and actions required, with a clear action plan and priority ratings. It should be discussed with the organisation and the auditor to ensure it is clearly understood and a programme of improvements planned and agreed.
Please contact us for more information or if you would like some advice and support.