Effective OHS policies and procedures

Effective OHS policies and procedures

by Chris Beasley

Keeping your workers safe is an integral part of running a successful business.

If employers - known under the new national model work health and safety laws as 'PCBUs' -don't provide a safe working environment there are serious consequences, possibly the least of which are penalty notices, imposed by the relevant state WorkCover authority.

Workplace incidents cost time and money - a loss in productivity, re-training of workers, increases in workers compensation premiums and loss of business that may stem from a poor record and reputation to workplace health and safety potentially dwarf any fine that may be imposed for a perceived 'at fault' workplace incident.

Putting an effective and integrated OHS management system - one that includes working OHS policies and procedures in place minimises the likelihood of an incident, where worker engagement creates a 'buy in' of workplace health and safety .

Many paper based 'OHS management systems' are simply a set of OHS policies and procedures that a lot of the time, sit on a desk in a corner gathering dust.

An OHS management system should almost certainly be online and engage the user when necessary to make a more concerted, systemised approach to OHS a much easier proposition.

The system should include risk registers, workplace inspections, risk assessment and contractor management tools AND OHS (workplace health and safety) policies and procedures manuals that relate to the industry the workplace engages in.

Many online OHS management systems provide template copies of OHS policies and procedures manuals and some even provide separate templates to suit particular industries.

A workplace should also check with their industry association and respective state WorkCover authority to source relevant codes of practice and guidance documents to shape the OHS policy and procedures manuals to suit the business.

For more information, visit: www.smartohs.com.au