All organisations and businesses need to comply with Health & Safety regulations within their operation. Abbott Rose Consulting Ltd has developed this step by step guide to health and safety for business owners, managers and those responsible for implementing health and safety policies, processes and procedures in their workplace. These useful tips and resources will help to enable you and your workforce to be proactive not reactive in the face of compliance.
Health & Safety the Basics:
If you employ 5 or more people, you are legally required to have written procedures for managing health and safety in your workplace. That sounds daunting and, yes, there can be a lot to think through.
Your organisations health and safety policy needs to identify the arrangements and individuals responsible for the effective management of health and safety in your organisation. Every business has its unique aspects, and no one size fits all. Therefore, you will need to develop a health and safety policy specifically for your organisation that takes into account all aspects of work carried out.
To be compliant with the Health and Safety at Work Act etc -1974, a Health & Safety
Policy must contain 3 separate parts:
The information included in your health and safety policy should be relevant to the nature of work and industry sector and be compliant to law and regulation bodies within your sector. Your organisations policy is not supposed to be a complex document. However, it should detail what you do and how you manage it. Your workforce needs to be able to understand the processes and procedures clearly and easily.
The organisation chart sets out the names, positions and duties of staff within your organisation who have specific responsibilities for health and safety. This chart shows the hierarchy of your workforce and identifies named persons’ including their job title and their roles in health and safety. This should include directors, managers, supervisors and specialists such as safety advisers or works engineers, etc. A simple list may be enough for smaller organisations.
Duties and Responsibilities
In compliance with the HSWA, the most senior person has responsibility for ensuring the Health & Safety Policy is communicated to all employees. The organisations statement of intent set out how the policy is to be communicated to all members of the workforce. Policies should be reviewed annually, changes made and the document should be signed and dated.
Each individual must have a summary of their duties and be clear about their responsibilities and the limits of those responsibilities in taking reasonable care of themselves and others’. The summary of their duties must be compliant with the Management of Health & Safety at Work Regulations.
Non-compliance of the managerial duties and your organisations Health & Safety policies could be deemed as negligence. Equally, employee duties detailed in the policies and summary will dictate what is deemed as “reasonable care”.
How The Company Addresses Specific Items of Compliance
Your policy should detail the arrangements, processes and procedures you have in place to manage and control the risks to health and safety in your workplace, the activities that present risks and who might be affected by them.
The policy should give details of the specific systems and procedures used to enforce your Statement of Intent: including health and safety rules, procedures and facilities such as first aid kits or recording incidents in an accident book for example.
It must also include arrangements for fire and other emergencies. Information, instruction, training and supervision should also be included and recorded.
Many organisations choose to develop a Health & Safety Process and Procedures Manual. These are often complex tasks that require a specific process or procedure to be documented. In providing this, any new member of staff, or member of staff stepping in to cover sickness, for example, has a step-by-step guide then to follow. Not only does this ensure they can be up and running swiftly, but that they can operate safely too.
Writing a Health & Safety Policy is not an easy task. Abbott Rose Consulting Ltd can assist you all aspects of this process ensuring your organisation is proactive not reactive in achieving and maintaining compliance.
Risk Assessments are a key requirement under the Management of Health and Safety Regulations (specifically Regulation 3). However, in truth, they make good business sense too, for they give your employees peace of mind. Of course, a pragmatic approach needs to be taken, significant risks must be addressed, trivialities should not be given too much weight.
Regulation 3 of the Management of Health and Safety Regulations, require that all operations carried out by the company have a suitable and sufficient Risk Assessment.
The amount of detail and information in this list will be different from one organisation to another. However good practice will be to constantly plan, check, review and update on an ongoing basis. Employing the services of a health and safety consultant such as Abbott Rose Consultancy will ensure that your arrangements are consistently effective and compliant.
Abbott Rose Consulting Ltd are here to assist businesses and organisations with advice and guidance in all areas of health and safety compliance, whether this be in terms of documentation, writing policies, auditing processes and procedures, implementing safety systems or to provide training. For more information contact Abbott Rose Consulting Ltd on: 01832 290500 or email us HERE.
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