What is a safety audit at work?
Although control and audit terms are often used interchangeablely, it is crucial to distinguish the purpose of implementing these processes. Although the implementation of each of them is aimed at ensuring safety at work, they nevertheless pursue separate objectives and only in an appropriate and planned combination are able to give a complete picture of the level of security of the company.
The audit is part of a system of legal requirements and focuses primarily on verifying that the worker has access to the appropriate tools necessary for the performance of the duties, systems and, for example, protective clothing entrusted to him.
In turn, the subject of the audit is to verify the entire process of activities undertaken in the company within a given area. A reliable audit makes it possible to detect all irregularities and their substance. It answers the question of whether the implemented actions are necessary and bring real value to the company and the safety of its employees. Importantly, it also allows you to optimize costs.
The audit covers the following areas:
- Training or up-to-date health and safety for employees.
- Measurement of factors harmful to the health of workers.
- Verification of the regulations of work in force in the plant or building.
- Assessment of professional risk in individual positions.
- Verification of the existing first aid system.
- Presence and work of the Health and Safety Committee.
- The use of individual protection for workers – including workwear.
- Technical condition of machinery and equipment.
A properly prepared audit report should not only clearly identify areas for short- and long-term modification, but also include specific recommendations for implementations to address irregularities, which will eliminate risks from the work environment.
OSH audits vary slightly depending on the company’s business profile, risks and regulations. An OSH audit by professionals allows you to study all key areas. It consists of meetings with interested persons, a review of documentation and the facts.
The overarching objective of these activities is, of course, to protect the health and life of workers. A professional OSH audit helps you spot all the risk factors. But that’s not all the benefits. OSH audits help employers comply with all current regulations, so that the company is not punished for non-compliance. From a broader perspective, the assessment of OSH conditions therefore translates into budgetary benefits. In this way, the company can predict the structure of expenses more precisely. OSH audits are also carried out at the beginning of cooperation – on the occasion of OSH outsourcing. It is then carried out by the company, which then takes responsibility for the implementation of the OSH policy in the company that is its client.