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10th January, 2017

Time For Your Annual Health And Safety Review?

When was the last time you carried out a formal review of your health and safety policies, documentation and procedures?

Having your health and safety documentation in place is great, but with the year going by so fast, it is important to remember when it is time for your annual health and safety review.

As it is the start of the new year, now is a great time to review your health and safety documentation and management procedures.

You should review your health and safety documentation if it is no longer valid or there is any significant change.

It is good practice to review your health and safety policy, and other documentation such as risk assessments at least annually.

This review doesn't mean you need to re-do everything, it just means you need to review your existing documentation and policies to ensure they are up to date and compliant with best practice and current legislation.

The review means you can identify any areas that need changing or updating, and make the necessary improvements.

It doesn't really matter when in the year you do your review, the important thing is you carry out your annual review around the same time every year so that your documents and procedures don't go out of date.

3.— (3) Any assessment such as is referred to in paragraph (1) or (2) shall be reviewed by the employer or self-employed person who made it if—

(a)there is reason to suspect that it is no longer valid; or

(b)there has been a significant change in the matters to which it relates; and where as a result of any such review changes to an assessment are required, the employer or self-employed person concerned shall make them.

The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999

Remember that best practice is to review if you need to make any changes to your health and safety documentation at least annually.

You might need to carry out reviews more frequently for example:

  1. If there are changes to your work procedures
  2. Changes to your business activities
  3. Changes to relevant legislation impacting your business actives
  4. Evidence of any failings in health and safety management
  5. An accident or incident

Not only should your health and safety documents be legally compliant, they are also regularly requested by potential clients, investors, stakeholders and insurance companies. So it is important your health and safety documentation reflects the current priorities, arrangements and targets for your business.

The above might sound time consuming, but keeping your health and safety documentation accurate and up to date can actually save you time and money in the long-term.

How? Because good health and safety can save you money. You may identify a weakness or failing in your review that can improve health and safety performance, reducing absences and risks, and improving productivity by protecting your workforce.

Do you need help keeping your health and safety documentation up to date? We have a large library of health and safety policy documents and risk assessment templates you can edit and use for your business activities.

This article was written by Emma at HASpod. Emma has over 10 years experience in health and safety and a degree in construction management. She is NEBOSH qualified and a member of IOSH.

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