What is OHSAS 18001?
OHSAS 18001 is an international standard giving requirements related to Health and Safety Management Systems.
OHSAS 18001 enables an organization to have control over, and knowledge of, all relevant hazards resulting from normal operations and abnormal situations, and improve its performance.
An increasing number of organisations are completing OHSAS 18001 certification as employers are under increasing pressure to ensure that a rigorous health and safety policy is in place which protects employees against possible occupational risks and reduces the likelihood of accidents in the workplace. By planning ahead an organisation can also identify health and safety risks and conform to health and safety legislation.
Why should you implement OHSAS 18001 in your organization?
The benefits of OHSAS 18001 cannot be overstated; companies large and small have used this standard to great effect, as mentioned above. Here are just a few of these benefits:
Improve your image and credibility – By assuring customers that you have a commitment to demonstrable management of occupational health and safety, you can enhance your image and market share through maintaining a good public image and improved community relations.
Improved stakeholder relationships. - Make the health and property of staff, customers and suppliers more of a priority and people will respond.
Improve cost control – One improvement that all companies are looking for is reduction of costs. The OHSAS can help with this by increasing rating at insurance companies, while reducing occupational health and safety incidents that may lead to lawsuits and deterioration of the company’s image.
Use evidence-based decision making – By ensuring that you are using accurate data to make your decisions on what to improve, you can greatly increase the chances that your improvements will be successful the first time, rather than having several unsuccessful attempts.
Win more business- Procurement specifications often require certification as a condition to supply so gaining the standard opens doors.
Create a culture of continual improvement – With continual improvement, you can work toward better processes and reduced occupational health and safety hazards in a systematic way in order to improve your public image and potentially reduce your costs, as identified above.
When you compare ISO 14000 & 18000, you will see that they are very similar to each other and share these elements:
- Roles & Responsibilities
- Targets & Objectives
- Supplier Control / Purchasing
- Document Control
- Operational Control
- Corrective and Preventive Action
- Management Review
The main difference between ISO 14001 and OHSAS 18001 is that:
- ISO 14001 focuses on managing your organization’s impact on the external environment, to reduce pollution and comply with regulations
- OHSAS 18001 focuses on managing your organization’s internal environment to ensure a safe and healthy workplace.