02 Oct

Practical Ways of Demonstrating Top Management Involvement in ISO 45001 for OH&S Management System

Importance of Top Management Leadership and Commitment toward OH&S Management System

Leadership, commitment and active support from top management are critical for the success of the OH&S management system and for the achievement of its intended outcomes. A culture that supports an organisation’s OH&S management system is largely determined by top management and is the product of individual and group values, attitudes, managerial practices, perceptions, competencies and patterns of activities that determine the commitment to, and the style and proficiency of, its OH&S management system.

Understanding what is considered adequate evidence of top management involvement in demonstrating leadership and commitment with respect to ISO 45001 can often be quite perplexing.  This article puts forward several practical ways of demonstrating top management involvement. Firstly, let’s define top management and identify their responsibilities.

Defining Top Management

Top management refers to a person or group of people who directs and controls an organisation at the highest level. In practical terms, top management can mean a small business owner, the executive board or, in a non-hierarchical structure, everyone involved in taking high-level decisions.

Top Management Responsibilities with Respect to the OH&S Management System

1. Leadership and Commitment

Top management shall demonstrate leadership and commitment with respect to the OH&S management system by:

  1. taking overall responsibility and accountability for the prevention of work-related injury and ill health, as well as the provision of safe and healthy workplaces and activities;
  2. ensuring that the OH&S policy and related OH&S objectives are established and are compatible with the strategic direction of the organisation;
  3. ensuring the integration of the OH&S management system requirements into the organisation’s business processes;
  4. ensuring that the resources needed to establish, implement, maintain and improve the OH&S management system are available;
  5. communicating the importance of effective OH&S management and of conforming to the OH&S management system requirements;
  6. ensuring that the OH&S management system achieves its intended outcome(s);
  7. directing and supporting persons to contribute to the effectiveness of the OH&S management system;
  8. ensuring and promoting continual improvement;
  9. supporting other relevant management roles to demonstrate their leadership as it applies to their areas of responsibility