When the word ‘audit’ is announced – it can send shivers across the workplace. But, it doesn’t have too! Auditors are nothing to be feared, so long as you are preparing your organisation and your employees for the different audits you may have to take part in throughout the life of your business. We’re going to outline to you some things to think about when conducting an internal WHS audit.
One of the most common is a work health and safety audit – carried out for multiple purposes across many different industries. We’ve prepared a checklist for Business and Compliance Managers who are preparing for a WHS audit. Conducting an internal audit of WHS procedures is paramount to ensuring the safety of your employees, your clients and the public in general.
It is recommended that you conduct an internal WHS audit annually and to have a process in place to continue to improve your processes over time. Here are some questions to consider when conducting your internal audit.
- Do you have a current workplace health and safety policy? Has it been reviewed yearly?
- Do you have an up-to-date incident register?
- Are staff effectively using the register?
- Do you have a process in place for communicating WHS issues to staff?
- Do you have an appointed Health and Safety Representative in each location?
- Is there training up to date?
- Are you effectively recording meetings of minutes in regards to WHS issues and are they stored in an easy to find and manageable location?
- Is your First Aid kit fully stocked and everyone is aware of how to access it?
- Is all of your signage up to date and appropriately displayed for any hazards?
- Do you have all of the required PPE and is it easily accessible by staff?
- If previous incidents have occurred, have the solutions been documented?
- Do you regularly review the WHS conduct of your staff in performance reviews?
- Do you regularly consult with industry regarding the WHS requirements of your business or organisation?
- Do your inductions of new staff including work health and safety procedures?
This is a very basic list of points that Business and Compliance Managers can take into account when reviewing their workplace health and safety procedures internally.
If your business is subject to external WHS audits, it is important to remember that you will be marked against criteria that at times can be very strict and require a lot of documentation to back up the evidence that specific tasks have been performed throughout the life of the business.
Effective record keeping processes are of paramount importance to survive an audit but are in essence, an extremely important part of any successful business operation.
If you think that someone within your organisation could benefit from being effectively trained in auditing processes, Asset College is able to help and can also align any previous experience to a nationally recognised qualification through Recognition of Prior Learning.
You can find in-depth work health and safety criteria to measure your business against on a number of government websites.