• Wayne Nicholl
    Hi, I am currently working for a small / med construction company and looking at potentially using the ISO framework as a vehicle to lift our H&S standards. In a past life I did some auditing for ISO and to be honest it has sort of put me off. Has it changed to a point where it is not an admin nightmare to maintain? Has anyone implemented it and did it actually improve safety or just your audit scores??
  • Tony Walton
    Hi Wayne - I've implemented ISO 45001 in several organisations 2017/18. Yes the management system standard has significantly changed from an 'admin nightmare' to 'you decide what documentation you'll keep' and wisely goes with a risk based approach focusing on 'what really matters'. Does it improve safety? Compared to WSMP, Safe Plus, AS/NZS 4801 or ISO18001 you'll be pleasantly surprised with the analysis and what to do with it. Find me on LinkedIn NZ if you'd like to discuss your specific situation..
  • Michael Wilson
    We are currently exploring this. We are waiting for ACC to make some decisions around EAP which is slowing down my business case.
  • Andrew Jorgensen
    In my experience, both internal H&S standards or external ISO standards require an audit to look for gaps, action system to close the gaps, and monitoring. Have you looked at SafePlus?
  • Monex Holdings

    Hi Wayne. What did you decide in the end?
    We are also considering this, but pretty much solely due to the fact we are already 9001 and 14001 accredited. Bringing H&S into a similar management process might help us to more easily and effectively manage our H&S system - and Quality, H&S and Environmental often intersect each other in areas like risk management and continuous improvement. Audit wise it would add a few hours to the annual external audit we do, so relatively low cost for on-going maintenance.
  • Wayne Nicholl
    at this stage I will spend this year preparing our documentation against ISO standards - then go for accreditation in 2020. I ;looked at SafePlus - but think we can go beyond that ... fingers crossed!
  • Sheri Greenwell
    I look at the ISO standards as a useful generic checklist. It's no substitute for actively and appropriately considering your own business context and needs and developing useful and relevant management systems accordingly. Likewise, I often suggest that the ISO standards are best used as a guidance tool rather than seeking formal certification unless demanded by customers, with the proviso that the organisation must 1) understand the requirements sufficiently to 2) apply them intelligently and appropriately to the organisation and 3) conduct sufficient organisational intelligence and management reviews to keep executive management's finger on the pulse to ensure the system continues to function as it should.
  • Wayne Nicholl
    Thanks for that - really good feedback
  • Chris Peace
    Last year I led 16 workshops on 45001 for NZISM members and made the point that all management system standards (eg, 45001, 9001 and 14001) are based on "Annex SL". This sets out the high-level structure for all such standards (43 at last count) and is available free of charge from the ISO website.
    Annex SL has the potential to be a straightjacket and has caused problems for the 2018 edition of ISO31000 but If you already have, for example, a 9001 system adding 45001 to create an integrated management system should be fairly simple.
    SafePlus does not fit neatly into the Annex SL framework and so is really a standalone system for OHS.
    A key question is what will get senior management to act? Do they want silos in which the organisation is managed or an integrated system where there is "one process for an activity"?
    I've now structured all my training materials to link with Annex SL (and thus all MSS) and later this year will complete adding SafePlus. So far, the integrated process makes much simpler.
    Wayne, I would be inclined to develop a combined 9001/45001 system and aim for certification when management and the market are ready for it.
  • E Baxter

    Are you please able to provide a link to the Annex SL? It sounds interesting but I can't seem to find it...
  • Chris Peace
    The full link to the pdf is below (do the usual copy paste into your browser).
    If that doesn't work go to https://www.iso.org/directives-and-policies.html . In the left hand side of the screen you should see "ISO/IEC Directives Part 1 and Consolidated ISO Supplement". Click on that and on the supplement page select the pdf version.
    When you have the pdf navigate to annex SL (the whole document is very long). I suggest you copy that annex out and create a new file that will be much easier to use. If you use annex SL thoughtfully you should be well down track with developing a generic management system but will not have, for example, any detail from 45001 or 9001.
    Let us know how you get on.
  • Chris Peace

    A follow up thought on ISO documentation. Many will know the concerns about excessive paperwork. ISO published guidance after the 2015 edition of ISO9001 was published that partly answers this. Go to:
    Scroll down till you see "Guidance on the requirements for Documented Information of ISO 9001:2015" and click on it to select it.
    Let us all know what you think on it.
  • Wayne Nicholl
    wow .... I am gaining a healthy appreciation for ISO since my earlier post, but ..... I am still finding that a lot of companies are using it as a tick in the box and their workers know nothing of the requirements. A recent audit was done with one of our subbies. They had ISO - but had some terrible practices in the worksite. They had no knowledge of the procedures they should be following - even the basics such as SWMS were terrible. A challenge to keep it all real and value add
  • Sheri Greenwell
    This is why standards are best thought of as a checklist to guide development of an effective management system, rather than a template for what should be in the system. Unless the systems are tailored to suit the needs of the business and its stakeholders, and if the sections within the standards don't align neatly and continuously, it's pretty much a wasted effort and false sense of security.

    In the past, I worked for a company that had been certified to ISO9001 based on a Quality Manual that essentially reflected the standard rather than the organisation. A "consultant" had worked with the Technical Manager to develop the system, but the whole thing was based on the standard rather than on the business, the organisation and its people. They could not relate to the abstract and generic language of the standard, and no one had adapted or translated it in a way that could be relevant to stakeholders. The whole exercise had clearly been carried out solely to get the tick of approval from their customers. In fact, on my 4th day in the role, I arrived at work to find a Telarc auditor waiting for me. No one had told me there was going to be an audit, and there were no managers on site that day! So instead of an audit, I had quite a heart-to-heart with the auditor.

    I always think of the standards as being more of a "back end" kind of tool, used by the compliance manager and senior management team to check that they are on track with meeting the standard, but we should not be pushing them out on stakeholders in their raw or even partly-digested form.

    A colleague developed a really simple framework to incorporate ISO9001 and any other standards into a coherent framework, including assessment of performance using the principles of the Balanced Scorecard. I managed to convince the management team to change tack and set up their system using The Business Highlighter by Annabel Mitchinson, a former Telarc auditor and business consultant. The principles allow you to incorporate any / all chosen standards into a single purposeful and coherent system - including the Business Excellence Framework (which is probably now superseded by more recent versions of the ISO standards) and Investors in People.
  • Chris Peace
    My Victoria University students who have been studying HLWB507 "Principles of Health and Safety Management" have been looking at ISO45001 and SafePlus. Along the way I introduced them to a research article: Cohen, A. (1977). “Factors in successful occupational-safety programs”. Journal of Safety Research, 9(4), 168-178. The article is hard to get but the key findings were found "to include
    1. Strong management commitment to safety as defined by various actions reflecting management’s support and involvement in safety activities.
    2. Close contact and interaction between workers, supervisors, and management enabling open communications on safety as well as other job-related matters.
    3. A workforce subject to less turnover, including a large core of married, older workers with significant lengths of service in their jobs.
    4. A high level of housekeeping, orderly workplace conditions, and effective environmental quality control.
    5. Well-developed selection, job placement, and advancement procedures plus other employee support services.
    6. Training practices emphasizing early indoctrination and follow-up instruction in job safety procedures.
    7. Evidence of added features or variations in conventional safety practices serving to enhance their effectiveness.
    Management commitment to safety was believed a major, controlling influence in attaining success in industrial accident prevention efforts. Open communication between workers, supervisors, and management was also considered of great significance. Overall, the nature of these distinguishing factors suggested that maximally effective safety programs in industry will be dependent on practices that can successfully deal with “people” variables".
    The article is 43 years old and much has changed in that time (including item 3) but, for me, the above 1-7 are basics and might get a medium-size business a great management system.
    Apart from teaching this and risk management I plan to research some of this over the next few years. Participants welcome!
  • Karen
    I'm ISO 9001, 14001, 27001 and 45001 and the main changes I've found (particularly around quality) as the standards have morphed is that it's gone from a this is what you must do and this is how you must do it style, to a this must be controlled and how you do that is up to you type system. It means when I'm implementing that it's so much smoother, we can bring together existing systems with new requirements and the client always seems to find it a simple process, from my POV anyway. And when I'm auditing I get to see a million and one ways to do things, which only improves myself as an auditor.

    I started out working with a larger company in the 90s and it put me off. Now, I am loving it again. I think it's far more productive for companies and continual improvement.
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