ISO 45001: A Guide


ISO 45001, an International Standard, outlines requirements for an occupational hygiene and safety (OH&S), management program. It guides its use to allow an organization to proactively improve its OH&S performance by preventing injury and ill health. ISO 45001 is applicable to all organizations, regardless of their size, type, and nature. Through its OH&S management systems, ISO 45001 allows an organization to incorporate other aspects of safety and security, such as worker wellness/wellbeing. However, it is possible for an organization to be required by any applicable legal requirements.


What are the benefits of ISO 45001?

An ISO 45001-based OH&S management program will help an organization improve its OH&S performance.

  • Developing and implementing an OH&S policy and OH&S Objectives
  • Establishing systems that take into account the “context” of the project and consider its risks, opportunities, legal and other requirements.
  • Identifying and removing hazards and OH&S dangers associated with its activities.
  • Establishing operational controls to manage OH&S risks as well as legal and other requirements
  • Increasing awareness of OH&S hazards
  • Evaluate the organization’s OH&S performance and seek to improve it through appropriate actions
  • Ensuring workers play an active role in OH&S issues

Combining these measures will promote the organization’s reputation of being a safe place for employees. These benefits can also be more direct, such as:

  • Improving its responsiveness to regulatory compliance issues
  • Reducing total costs
  • Reducing downtime, and the costs associated with disruption to operations
  • Cutting down on insurance premiums
  • Reducing absenteeism, and employee turnover rates
  • Recognition to have achieved an international benchmark. (This may in turn influence customers who care about their social responsibility)

The ISO 45001 certification will be effective once it is released. It is subject to mandatory audits each calendar year to ensure compliance. You will need to complete a reassessment inspection after the three-year period ends in order to be recertified.

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Who are the intended users of the Standard

All organizations, in simple terms. Your organization will benefit from a systemic approach to managing safety and health as long as it has people who work for it. Small, low-risk organizations can use the standard as well as large, complex operations. Although the standard requires that OH&S hazards are managed and controlled, it also applies a risk-based approach towards the OH&S system to ensure a) it is effective and b), it can be updated to reflect the changing environment of an organization. This risk-based approach to OH&S management is compatible with how organizations manage their “business” risks. Therefore, it encourages the integration of the standard’s requirements in organizations’ overall management processes.

Our Accreditation

Accreditation means that a certification body can be recognized as offering certification services. Certification Europe must have a Quality Management System in place to become accredited. The system is evaluated by an Independent Authorised Body (Irish National Accreditation Body), to verify that it meets International Standards. Certification Europe undergoes an audit every year to ensure that it meets the requirements of all relevant accreditation standards. INAB (Irish National Accreditation Body and UKAS Accreditation) has to accredit ISO 45001.2018.

What does ISO 45001 mean in relation to other standards?

ISO 45001 uses the high-level structure approach to ISO management system standards such as ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 (quality). The standard was developed with consideration for other international standards such as OHSAS 18001, the International Labour Organisation’s ILO -OSH guidelines” and national standards. It also considers the ILO International Labour standards and conventions.

After the standard is published, all those adopting it will find that its requirements are consistent with other standards. This will allow an easy transition from an existing OH&S standard to ISO 45001. It will also make it possible for organizations to integrate the requirements of other ISO standards into their overall management processes.


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