01st Nov, 2019 Read time 2 minutes

What is ISO 40051?

A key part of health and safety is the regular introduction of standardised practices and procedures that ensure different organisations are all conforming to the same standards.

ISO 40051 is an ISO standard for management systems of occupational health and safety which, as many other ISO standards do, attempts to reduce the number of occupational injuries and diseases that occur within an organisation. The standard was introduced in 2018 and is currently used in many different countries around the world. It follows other generic management system approaches such as ISO 14001 and ISO 9001 and is based on earlier standards in this area such as OHSAS 18001.

The standard is applicable to any organisation regardless of size or industry. However, ISO 45001 leaves many of the methods of its delivery to the subject. There are, for example, no guidelines on the design of a health and safety management system or how it is to be introduced.


Changes promoted in the new ISO 45001 standard compared to the old standard

There are a number of new ideas and procedures that have been put forward in the new best practice standard, and part of this requires organisations to consider how suppliers and contractors are managing their risks. ISO 45001 does promote the idea of organisational content, meaning organisations can now determine issues that are relevant to their industry and consider it in an HSE context.

Some of the topics promoted in ISO 45001:

  • Context of the organisation
  • Risk and Opportunities
  • Leadership and management commitment

In theory, the fact that ISO 40051 has been designed with previous ISO standards means there is a high level of compatibility between the procedures.


Benefits of implementing ISO 40051

Developing a quality management system that complies with ISO 40051 will help your business deliver consistent performance. Some of the benefits include:

  • A more focused workforce with good knowledge of the management system
  • Decreases issues with regulatory compliance
  • Reduce the overall cost of incidents
  • Reduction in the cost of insurance premiums
  • Reduction in employee turnover rates


Does your business need an ISO 45001 certification?

The short answer is no. There is no formal requirement for businesses to certify themselves in the ISO standard. However, that does not mean you don’t need to comply with it. A good quality management system that considers health and safety as a matter, of course, will ensure your business has no compliance issues.

If you do wish to certify yourself in ISO 45001 you will enjoy the added endorsement that your business is a safe place to work with strong management of health and safety.

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