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How to develop a safety management system – Part 2

By Joanna Weekes

Developing an effective safety management system for your business is essential.

Today we complete the handy step-by-step which lays out the main steps you need to take to make sure your safety management system covers all the right bases.

Refer to last week’s OH&S Bulletin – How to develop a safety management system: Part 1 for the first 3 steps in this process…

Step 4: Develop hazard identification and risk management processes

Health and safety in your workplace should be managed by a system that:

  • identifies workplace hazards (on a regular basis);
  • assesses risks to health and safety from those hazards;
  • implements appropriate measures to control risks;
  • monitors those controls regularly; and
  • provides feedback and information to managers and workers.

Therefore, you need to determine methods and safe work procedures for each of the above.

Step 5: Establish a training program

Workplace training needs to be tailored to the specific needs of your workplace.

Establish a training and induction program for new or transferring workers as well as systems for the ongoing training of current workers.

Training is essential to the creation and maintenance of a safety culture in your business. Managers and workers must have sufficient training to be involved in managing health and safety.

Step 6: Establish a record and document management system

It is important to have a thorough record and document management system in place, and to ensure it is followed by everyone in your business.

This will ensure that all policies, procedures, reviews, checks, inspections and audits are documented and all records are stored in a manner that permits easy retrieval.

Step 7: Monitor your workplace for safety compliance

Ensure that the policies, procedures and practices are implemented consistently throughout your business, and are reviewed regularly to ensure they remain up-to-date, relevant and effective.

Tip: Senior management should receive regular reports about the operation of the safety management system to determine if it is working adequately.

Remember, your safety management system must be able to adapt to changes to:

  • work methods;
  • systems and processes;
  • substances;
  • plant and equipment;
  • and the workforce.
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