What is ISO 45003 I hear you say?
The ISO 45003 marks a significant step forward in equipping employers with understanding well-being in the workplace.
This is to promote wellbeing in the workplace. So any hazards including psychosocial hazards, how work is organized, social factors at work, and all aspects of the work environment, equipment and hazardous tasks.
These psychosocial hazards can affect both psychological health and safety and well-being at work in a more broadly aspect. Employees have a general duty to take all responsible steps to safeguard the safety and health of their workers and others.
Awareness to that extends to mental as well as physical safety and health. And this has been growing for some time now with various initiatives launched, which are designed to improve and safeguard the mental health of workers.
ISO 45003 outlines examples of psychosocial hazards arising from work, social factors, the work environment, equipment and hazardous tasks, and includes the whole range of measures that can be used to eliminate hazards or minimize associated risks.
It includes information on what is important for businesses to consider in relation to raising awareness of risks, developing competence in the management of the psychosocial risks, and also supporting the recovery and return to work of affected workers and planning for, and responding to emergency situations.
Continuing a theme developed in other compliance areas, this document will also recognize the significance of top level commitment and worker engagement in driving improvements forward. So the ISO 45003 takes the management of the psychosocial risk way beyond the remit of traditional occupational health and safety. The ownership and visible leadership on the issue starts with senior management with specific provision within the standard for leadership, clarification of organization roles and communication within the workforce.
These factors within the standard will consider planning processes so HR and occupational health and safety professionals, in particular, will also help other risk management team with any organization, as well. So we need to assess the risks for ISO 45003, as a management standard. The UK now has a well-developed set of regulatory standards in this area for organizations operating a global business.
As we emerge from COVID-19, the pandemic, the increase in emphasis on improving worker well-being is likely to continue. ISO 45003 will provide detailed and practical guidance against which organizations can audit themselves internally and externally to understand where they are currently and then being able to deliver against any objectives that they want to. As a result, the business will be able to put in place detailed action plans, addressing each aspect of the standard, and that will allow them to understand what data they need to collect to evaluate the performance, and who within the organization will be required to deliver against those actions.
Look forward to seeing this come into force in some companies!!
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