OHSAS 18001 training - what are the options?
Currently in the UK, there are vast number of training providers offering a range of OHSAS 18001 training
courses. Some courses are geared towards promoting awareness of the system, some are designed to assist those implementing the system, while others are designed to enable individuals to be involved in or lead an audit, evaluating how well their organisation is operating in terms of the 18001 standard.
If your company is using the OHSAS 18001 management system, or plans to implement it in the future then it is very likely that you have considered some OHSAS 18001 training
. If the choice of courses is bewildering, read on to get the low down on each one.
Firstly, let us look at those who need to be familiar with the system, but do not have the responsibility for auditing it. Short one day OHSAS 18001 training
courses that focus on “awareness’ or “understanding the requirements” of the system are available. These tend to focus on a basic outline of what system requires and how this relates to the companies policy.
Next, let us look at the courses concerned with implementing the OHSAS 18001 system. These courses are designed for those that will be involved in executing the OHSAS requirements such as health and safety advisors. Ranging from one to two days these OHSAS 18001 training
courses focus on how to put the system into practice in your own company and cover issues such as the history of 18001, legislation, initial status review and gap analysis, planning and monitoring the system and how to review the system once it is in place.
For those that have the job of evaluating how well their company is meeting the OHSAS 18001 standards; there are the 18001 auditor courses. These can be split into two specialisms (although some providers offer courses which cover both the auditor and lead auditor role). The first of these specialists is the Internal Auditor. The Internal Auditor courses are designed for those who are involved in, but not leading the audits. The other auditor course available is the Lead Auditor course. This is specifically designed for those wishing to take charge of an audit. For both courses candidates will need to have previous knowledge of the OHSAS 18001 system before enrolling. The auditor courses tend to run over a duration of three to five days and involve a detailed study of the evaluation process. This includes; comparing OHSAS 18001 to other auditing systems, how to plan and carry out an audit, how to report what you find in an audit and skills needed to be effective in an audit. Auditor courses are assessed via a short exam at the end of the training.
Many auditors choose a course that is accredited by IRCA. IRCA or The International Register of Certified Auditors’ aim is to promote the integrity of auditors world wide and ensure that they work to a consistent standard. Having an IRCA accreditation can be an additional advantage both in the kudos is creates around your position and for your CV. It is also essential for those auditors that ultimately want to become assessors.