OHS (Occupational Health and Safety) management systems are the major elements of an organization’s common management system. It is a multidisciplinary ground which is concerned with health, welfare, and safety of organizational people. The main objective of OHS is to promote a healthy and safe workplace environment. This paper will discuss the key aspects of OHS in the context of Australian organizations. It is compulsory for the business managers to understand the OHS plans and their implementation programs rightfully to overcome the risk factors of an organization. This paper will help us to recognize how Australian companies can evaluate the key components of the safety system to allow implementation within the workplace to prevent hazards.
There are several factors to make and uphold a safe workplace environment. To actually succeed in building a safe environment, it is the responsibility of the senior executives to develop and employ an effectual safety management structure. The key factors in organizational health and safety management system are listed below:
A safety planning: Safety plan is the key strategic action planning which forms an element of the business plan. It can assist Australian organization to redirect their efforts to improve their work environment (Noe et al., 2017). It evaluates the present and potential risk for an organization and charts the process of how the hazards will be eliminated and managed over a schedule period. This plan makes sure that the governance structure is present within the company to make each individual clearly comprehend their safety responsibilities and also is accountable to execute those responsibilities.
Training programs: This factor will also give staff members a better understanding of their work procedures and duties within their job role, which in turn enhances their level of confidence. Every new or existing candidate of the workplace must receive proper training on the rules and regulations of the company properly. This will help him or her to perform tasks appropriately and on time.
Policies, processes, and procedures: These include every safety document infrastructures within the organization. The paperwork will portray each of the safety behaviour, record-keeping, expectations, event notification documentation, and incident reporting. Australian companies can uphold this OHS factor to maintain transparency among people.
Evaluation and monitoring: It is essential because it presents just a combined source of data and information that showcases project development. By monitoring development against the defined objectives, a project executive can assess the working structure appropriately. He or she can determine the changes that are needed in a project and then work accordingly to improve it. The project executives must know when and under what circumstances, business evaluation and monitoring is required (Sinelnikov, Inouye & Kerper, 2015).
Supervision: This is the only method to make sure that the employees are positively working and following the safety regulations of the company. It is important for the project head to formulate policies and plans of performing a task in the business. The companies of Australia can include this OHS system in their business structure to increase productivity and quality goods and services. The supervision level needed in the workplace will enhance if in case the level of health and safety control are placed properly to lessen risk factors.
Reporting: This is the last key factor of OHS management system that has a considerable impact on Australian companies, fundamentally by changing the method people execute their tasks and how the decisions are been made. This factor increases collaboration and communication among individuals effectively. The governance arrangement of companies requires safety and health reporting at every level rather than simply at the board level. The staffs must recognize what safety measures look like and how it is been followed. This can only happen when the staffs get safety feedback from the project head suitably and on time (Maceachen et al., 2016).
The risk management or ISO 31000:2018 presents guidelines on handling risk factors being faced by an organization. A company can use ISO 31000:2018 in any of the business activities. Australian companies use this process to stimulate the cost-efficient execution of the company’s objectives. ISO 31000 is appropriate for companies of Australia as it presents a universal agenda and method to handle risk properly. The guidelines for managing risk management factors in Australian companies are discussed below:
A company that aims to execute risk management methods must be conscious of every types of risk which have been or might be faced by a company while operating (Jespersen & Hasle, 2017). This could be attained by regarding every risk registered in the past and then identifying if any of the risk from past years has been solved or still exist. If in case, the company does not register the risk completely then the higher management must present the management team with all the information and data on the types of risks been faced and their sources as well. However, if the organization has not gone through any risk in the last years, they still have to identify the potential risks to prepare effective results to overcome the negative consequences.
The management team can begin intending a proper risk management structure with the help and support of the company’s top management after gaining an ample knowledge of the types of risks. The ISO 31000 emphasizes the growth which will entirely incorporate the risk management process into the Australian business. This structure assures that the organization-wide method is supported, effective and iterative. Thus, it proves that risk management would be a vigorous module in planning, strategy, policies, governance, management reporting methods, culture, and values. The successful execution of ISO 31000 framework needs the awareness and engagement of the stakeholders, as it allows workplaces to openly address ambiguity in making a decision, while making sure that any subsequent or new ambiguity could be taken into consideration as soon as it arises (Sheehan et al., 2016).
Figure: Risk Management Structure
Source: (Sheehan et al., 2016)
Executing risk management methods
The key risk management method is to enable the workplace to assess the potential or existing risks which might be faced. The company must evaluate the risks factors by analyzing the results with other established risk criterions. There are certain steps that need to be followed while integrating risk management method effectively. These are:
Consultation and communication
Reporting and recording
Monitoring and reviewing
Figure: Risk Management Methods
Source: (Hale, Borys & Adams, 2015)
Establishing processes for employee safety and health helps in increasing the system's efficiency, contributes towards lessening errors and also save money. An OH&S system is hence important for certifying the comfort of each individual working in the organization. The task of an OH&S system is to identify ways to effectively and proactively recognize safety hazards and risks prevent organization safety and health incidents, reporting incidents, responding to incidents and preventing upcoming incidents from occurring. A safety system is also vital from a legal perspective as they are needed to uphold particular standards of safety and health in the place of work. It is necessary for the organizations of Australia to implement an OH&S system to maintain a positive environment in the workplace where individuals share good communication and productively perform to attain targets (Loeppke et al., 2015).
Establishing requirements: This is the first stage to be implemented by companies to identify the OHS requirements as per the OHS legislation and policies in the context of workplace industry and environments.
Building the OHS governance framework: Secondly, the manager must bring the responsible people together to manage OHS elements properly. This involves electing delegates, setting OHS committee, electing chairperson, establishing committee procedures and structures and defining suitable communication structure among employees, management, and committee.
Creating plan: The workplace must set up broad OH&S plan for every employee of the organization. This plan must include sustainable planning for making sure that each individual gets proper safety and health measures. Besides, a preliminary exploration of OHS, reaction protocol for emergencies, training programs, communication methods, continuing evaluation and documenting structures are key steps in creating a plan.
Apply the plan: The Australian companies should assign appropriate representatives to handle the system accurately, after making a plan. This method includes regular inspections, reacting to incidents, training new applicants, responding management and staff concerns and running drills (Tappura et al., 2015).
Assessing and developing the system: Assessing allows the company to scrutinize the continuous growth of H&S system which implies that the safety committee will have to pass methods on a fragmentary basis to identify the missed opportunities and the procedures to improve the plan. As the OHS programs are rapidly increasing, the Australian companies must appoint trustworthy and skilled H&S representatives to handle their OHS apprehensions.
PDCA is a four-stage, imperative approach that continuously improves goods or services, processes and then resolves issues. This involves a thorough testing of possible resolutions, evaluating results and then implementing plans. PDCA stands for plan, do, check and act accordingly.
Figure: PDCA Cycle
Source: (Kvorning, Hasle & Christensen, 2015)
PDCA cycle assists businesses to control several risks and then implement effective resolutions in a precise methodological way. The following steps of PDCA will help Australian organizations to solve issues suitably.
It helps corporations to recognize and understand the risks factors or opportunities that the organization desires to take benefit of. It guides organizations to go through a procedure of discovering information and data, defining the risk, screening and generating ideas and then growing an implementation planning. The greater efficacy and reliability of this cycle allows workplaces to make better preparation in the risk detection and strategic development.
PDCA cycle presents an easy framework for iterative improvement. This cycle relies on accurate experiments and thus forces organizational team members to reassess risk evidence and data to plan out the conclusions (Pęciłło, 2016). PDCA cycle is based on the technical method and thus can be observed as an effective approach which has proven itself over time and which can reliably reduce risks factors and produce improvement.
This cycle aids in controlling threats as it manages risk management systems appropriately. An organization that applies the PDCA cycle in a reasoned manner, by maintaining the recognition, monitoring and controlling project characteristics with that of amplifying the potential risks can make better scheme risk management. This cycle gets adapted to any kind of organization easily. Despite the ease of applicability and adaptability, the managers can optimize time and yield effective results.
PDCA cycle presents clear separation among the iteration which is tested that unavoidably leads to low waste and raise output in the long run. It makes the processes more understandable and thus solves the risk factors easily. Involving this cycle in business operations can decrease the hazards when executing alteration by boosting control. It also set up an assurance to obtain constant improvement and betterment which allows an organization to stay competitive and also to continuously adapt and improve.
It is morally needed to guard an employee from every type of injury. This cycle will help workplaces to mitigate the risks and provide employees with a positive environment (Hibi et al., 2016). Australian companies must implement the PDCA cycle to catch mistakes in the organizational tasks, evaluate them, testing out development and then repeat as required. By following this, the organizations can prevent risks to happen again and cause losses for the business. Hazards in workplaces also diminish because the PDCA cycle presents an exceptional method for transformation to be checked. In addition, this automatically increases the efficiency and productivity of the company with that of higher customer satisfaction.
This paper has helped us to identify the impact of OHS management systems over Australian companies. It has been understood that OHS systems helps organizations to manage safety factors by executing incident-free place of work. It is necessary for every company to focus on the safety programs, as a small mistake could deteriorate the entire business dealings. The paper has presented major implementation plan that could be practiced in the workplace to balance work and productivity. Besides, the PDCA cycle described above could effectively lessen and control risk factors among companies. It is necessary for the project head to provide proper training and do monitoring to eradicate safety hazards efficiently from an organization.
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