Basically ISO 45001 is a new international standard related with occupational health and safety (OH&S). This standard offers a structure for handling death prevention, occupational injury and poor health. The planned outcomes of this standard are the improvement and provision of a harmless and healthy work environment for employees and persons working under the control of an organization.
Purpose of ISO 45001
The basic purpose of ISO 45001 is to facilitate organizations in planning systems so they can avoid injury and ill health proactively irrespective of their size or industry. Each and every requirement of this standard is intended to be included into the management and business practices of an organization. In this regard, ISO 45001 internal audits must be conducted by the organization at planned intervals to offer evidence on whether the OH&S management system follows the organization’s particular obligations for its OH&S management system, comprising the guiding principles and objectives of OH&S and the ISO 45001 requirements. Besides, the internal audit is very beneficial for the organization in identifying that its OH&S management system is implemented and continued in an effective manner. The complication and development level of the OH&S management system are two factors for deciding the scope of the internal audit program.
Controlling measures must be clearly defined by an organization in order to make sure that the procurement of goods (such as dangerous materials or constituents, products, raw materials or equipment) and services comply with the requirements of its OH&S management system. The company must classify procurement controls in advance of buying goods and services. A comprehensive ISO 45001 internal audit program must be designed, formed, implemented and sustained by the organization which covers important information like what will be the frequency of audit programs. This information must also mention the details regarding its protocols being followed by the organization. In this context, it must be kept in mind that these protocols must be should be meet the requirements of ISO 19011:2011 guidelines for auditing management systems in general. It is also essential to add the details of those personnel who have the responsibility to conduct and manage the ISO 45001 internal audit program. The type of consultation which happens with the auditors and the overall employees must also be added in the information along with the particulars of how these audits programs are being planned and implemented in the organization. More to the point, the design and format of the audit reports must be covered as well.
How to Conduct an ISO 45001 Internal Audit
During the development of the internal audit program the significance of the concerned procedures must be known along with the outcomes of prior audits. It will be revealed in the audit program being established on the outcomes of the risk evaluations of the business activities and the former audits results. Consequently, it will provide strategic direction for the organization in defining the audits frequency concerning specific activities, parts or roles. It will also help in determining those parts of the OH&S management system that should be kept under special consideration.
The ISO 45001 internal audit of the OH&S management system has to include areas and activities within the range of the OHSMS as stated by the standard’s clause 4.3 and evaluate compliance to ISO 45001 as well. For each audit the organization needs to clearly describe the scope and benchmarks of audit. The proof of audit must be reviewed in contrast to the audit standards for creating the results and conclusions of audit. Most importantly, the verification of audit evidence holds paramount value so it must be provable. When it comes to the selection of auditors than an organization must endeavor to pick those auditors who can conduct audits in order to confirm impartiality and the fairness of the audit procedure. The fairness and objectivity of the internal audit program can be formed by generating a procedure that divides the role of auditors as internal auditors from their allocated responsibilities in normal routine. On the other hand, organizations can avail the services of external audit firms for performing their internal audit process. The auditors must confirm that the audit results are conveyed to the related managers after the completion of audit program.
Furthermore, valid audit findings must be reported to employees; where they happen to be, to representatives of employees and to additional related interested parties as it affects them. The organization must take necessary step to deal with nonconformities in a proper and competent way. An organization has to seek continuous improvement for the effective implementation and performance of its OH&S management system. The documented information must be maintained by the organization as a proof of the audit program implementation along with the findings of audit program for future reference.