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5 common mistakes to avoid when building and implementing an ISO45001 Management System

ISO Certification expert
Stuart Watkins – Compliance & Systems Manager

Are you about to build and implement an ISO45001 safety management system? Regardless of the size of your business, this can be a complex undertaking. As an auditing body, there isn’t much we haven’t seen. We know what works and can identify the root causes when things don’t work so well. In this article, we have tried to simply explain some pitfalls to avoid throughout the process.

Here are 5 common mistakes we see with companies working through the ISO45001 Management System Certification Process.

1. DISENGAGED LEADERSHIP
Business leaders influence other people’s attitudes and behaviours by formalising policies and leading by example. Should a leader have little regard for the success of a safety management system, there is little to no chance an employee will care about its success. The employee is more likely to become disgruntled that the leader is trying to make them implement something they don’t even believe in themselves. They will likely identify that the leader’s motives aren’t primarily about protecting the health and safety of employees.

2. TOO HARD FOR EMPLOYEES TO USE
Quite often, we see systems developed with all the bells and whistles. They can track things and report on everything under the sun. However, how user-friendly is it for those who actually have to use the systems? A system that can’t be used or understood will not be correctly implemented.

3. POOR OR NON-EXISTENT COMMUNICATION
Communication keeps employees engaged. The information captured within a system has value beyond what goes into a report. Constant feedback between management and employees encourages greater engagement in the system, while the lessons learned and implemented validate everyone’s involvement.

4. TIME SPENT ON THE TRAINING
Building a new system and pushing it out too quickly will create implementation headaches and affect its ability to get off the ground. Appropriate time must be taken to ensure employees know their role within the system and how to complete system requirements.

5. THE BLAME GAME
Nothing kills a safety management system quicker than a culture of fear. Negative responses and repercussions from reporting incidents and near misses might be seen as “somebody’s fault”. Encouraging honesty and incentivising safety awareness and hazard identification will ensure that a safety system goes beyond a tick-and-flick exercise.

For more information on ISO management systems, check out our Downloadable Guides and Checklists

 

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