ISO 45001 OH&S

ISO 45001 is an ISO standard for management systems of occupational health and safety (OH&S), published in March 2018. The goal of ISO 45001 is the reduction of occupational injuries and diseases.

The standard is based on OHSAS 18001, conventions and guidelines of the International Labour Organization including ILO OSH 2001, and national standards. It includes elements that are added to BS OHSAS 18001 which it is replacing over a three-year migration period from 2018 to 2021.

ISO 45001 follows the High-Level Structure of other ISO standards, such as ISO 9001:2015 and ISO 14001:2015, which makes integration of these standards easier.


ISO 45001 was proposed at the ISO in October 2013. The committee ISO/PC 283, created in 2013, had direct responsibility for the standardization process. At least 70 countries contributed to the drafting process. Preparation and committee work lasted until December 2015. From 2015 to 2017, a first draft failed to gain sufficient approval from ISO members and was revised in a second draft, which was approved and refined into a final draft. In the final vote, the standard garnered 62 votes in favor, nine abstentions and four votes against from France, India, Spain, and Turkey. The standard was published on 12 March 2018.


ISO 45001 is set to replace OHSAS 18001 over three years following its publication in March 2018. BSI will formally withdraw BS OSHAS 18001 in March 2021, at the end of the migration period. ISO 45001 uses the management system standard structure guideline Annex SL to allow for simplified integration with other management system standards, such as ISO 9001 and ISO 14001. The International Accreditation Forum has published requirements for migration from OHSAS 18001 to ISO 45001.

ISO/IEC TS 17021-10:2018 is a technical specification setting out competence requirements for auditing and certification of ISO 45001.


ISO 45001 was adopted as a national standard by Albania, Argentina, Austria, Australia, Belgium, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Honduras, Hungary, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Malaysia, the Netherlands, New Zealand, North Macedonia, Norway, Paraguay, Peru, the Philippines, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Uruguay.

ISO 45001 changes compared to OHSAS 18001:2007

Context of the organization (Clause 4.1): The organization shall determine internal and external issues that are relevant to its purpose and that affect its ability to achieve the intended outcome(s) of its OH & S management system.
Understanding the needs and expectations of workers and other interested parties (clause 4.2): interested parties are workers, suppliers, subcontractors, clients, regulatory authorities.
Risk and opportunities (Clauses: 6.1.1,, 6.1.4): companies are to determine, consider and, where necessary, take action to address any risks or opportunities that may impact (either positively or negatively) the ability of the management system to deliver its intended results, including enhanced health and safety at the workplace.
Leadership and management commitment (Clauses: 5.1) has a stronger emphasis on top management to actively engage and take accountability for the effectiveness of the management system.
Planning: (clause 6)

Why would you need ISO certification? Apart from the standardisation of an organization, ISO plays an important role in its proper functioning and efficiency improvement. Let us understand why it is needed in detail is:

Improved Processes: One of the first reasons that any organization should go for ISO certification is because it addresses all key processes throughout the company. Taking into the specifications mentioned by ISO, the company maintains standard protocol of quality which eventually helps in improving products and services.

Customer satisfaction: The ultimate objective of any organization is to provide customer satisfaction. To achieve this, every organization adopts different measures and one of the best ways to exemplify the same is by going for ISO certification. Besides, some many clients or customers only wish to do business with ISO certified companies, so having this certification will eventually help in establishing trustworthiness and professional approach.

Right decision making: One of the key things that are imperative for any organization is the right decision making. Companies must make a decision based on an analysis of the information and processes that are followed rather than a gut feeling. Here comes the role of ISO. It offers a structured framework for quality management, thus, ensuring the right decision making.

Meet the requirements specified by the government: Bagging the government contract is a big deal for any company. Any organization that wishes to apply for the same needs to be equipped well so that it can match the criteria specified by the organization. Government tenders usually mention the ISO certification as qualifying criteria. Hence, having this certification makes your company eligible to apply for government contracts.

Establishing credibility: Any organization that wants to gain a competitive edge needs to make itself credible. There are various ways adopted by an organization to achieve the same, and one of them is by going for ISO certification. ISO is a well-known and renowned mark of the credibility of an organization. Having this certification will automatically attract the attention of the customer and gain their trust. Thus it adds credibility to your marketing and advertising strategies.

Saving on the cost: One of the areas where any organization would like to save money is the cost that it bears because of rework, repair, recall of production, outdated inventory and other quality issues. Besides, the loss of time and energy is also an addition to this cost. But, you can save on all this with ISO certification. With the standard quality management protocol specified by ISO, there will be a lesser probability of repair and other losses, thus helping you in saving the capital which can be effectively used for other tasks. Having error-free business operation methods, it becomes easier for you to become a more efficient organization.

Empowered Employees: One of the key criteria that any company needs to match to get ISO certification is the training of the staff. It also provides the necessary tools for them to perform their tasks like metrics, procedures, and the right protocol. It eventually helps in making the employees more knowledgeable, and they can perform their tasks more efficiently and without flaws.

Improved Consistency: With ISO certification, it has become easier for organizations to take control of their business processes. Since ISO mentions the specific protocol which every organization needs to follow, hence, going for this certification adds consistency to the business process.

Have a detailed report of the functioning of your organization: The ISO certification requires that any organization going for this must-have documented a detailed process using business metrics. The objective is to have a detailed guideline for the functioning of the organization. Moreover, this can also become a protocol for reference in the future. Also, it guarantees customers about the credibility of the organization.

Achieve international quality recognition: ISO is a globally recognized quality standard, and any organization that has this certification matches up to the international quality standards. The protocol of quality management, production remains the same globally. Hence, you can approach global clients with ease. Besides, the certificate also focuses on creating lesser waste and optimal utilization of resources.

Conclusion From the above-mentioned set of benefits, it would now be easier for any company to identify how important ISO can be for them. If you wish to gain an edge in the market and establishes your company as a credible one, ISO

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