Knowledge & Skill Requirements For Occupational Health & Safety Auditors

According to ISO 19011 Annex A.8, auditors that intend to examine
occupational health and safety (OH&S) management systems:

  • Need to have occupational health and safety management knowledge and skill, and

  • Be able to apply occupational health and safety management methods, techniques, processes, and practices.

They must have the knowledge and skill needed to examine occupational
health and safety management systems and to generate appropriate audit
findings and reach valid conclusions.

General OH&S Knowledge and Skill Expectations

The following examples illustrate the kind of general knowledge and
skill that occupational health and safety management auditors need
to have. They should:

1. Understand how to identify workplace hazards.

1.1. Understand how to identify physical hazards.

1.2. Understand how to identify chemical hazards.

1.3. Understand how to identify biological hazards.

2. Understand the factors that affect human performance.

2.1. Understand how age affects human performance.

2.2. Understand how health factors affect performance.

2.2.1. Understand how health factors are evaluated.

2.3. Understand how physical factors affect performance.

2.4. Understand how chemical factors affect performance.

2.5. Understand how gender affects human performance.

2.6. Understand how handicaps affect human performance.

2.7. Understand how physiological factors affect performance.

2.7.1. Understand how physiological factors are assessed.

2.8. Understand how psychological factors affect performance.

2.8.1. Understand how psychological factors are assessed.

3. Understand human behavior and interactions.

3.1. Understand how humans interact with each other.

3.2. Understand how humans interact with machines.

3.3. Understand how humans interact with processes.

3.4. Understand how humans interact with their environment.

3.4.1. Understand ergonomic and safe design principles.

3.4.2. Understand communication technologies.

4. Understand how OH&S risks are assessed.

5. Understand how to deal with exposure to OH&S risks.

5.1. Understand how to monitor exposure to OH&S risks.

5.2. Understand how to assess exposure to OH&S risks.

5.3. Understand how to eliminate or minimize exposures.

6. Understand occupational exposure guidelines and limits .

7. Understand how OH&S controls are selected.

7.1. Understand the "hierarchy of controls" approach.

8. Understand risk communication methods and practices.

9. Understand how to encourage OH&S competence.

9.1. Understand how to identify competence requirements.

9.2. Understand how to evaluate personal competence.

9.3. Understand how to improve personal competence.

10. Understand employee participation methods.

11. Understand how to promote human wellness.

11.1. Understand how to discourage harmful behaviors.

11.1.1. Understand how to discourage smoking.

11.1.2. Understand how to discourage drug abuse.

11.1.3. Understand how to discourage alcohol abuse.

11.1.4. Understand how to discourage aggression.

11.2. Understand how to encourage healthy behaviors.

11.2.1. Understand how to encourage exercise.

11.2.2. Understand how to encourage weight loss.

11.2.3. Understand how to encourage self-responsibility.

11.3. Understand how to manage and control stress.

12. Understand OH&S performance monitoring methods.

12.1. Understand OH&S performance reporting methods.

13. Understand performance measures and metrics.

13.1. Understand how to develop performance measures.

13.2. Understand how to use performance measurements.

13.3. Understand how to evaluate performance measures.

14. Understand emergency management methods.

14.1. Understand how to identify potential emergencies.

14.2. Understand how to perform emergency planning.

14.3. Understand how to prevent emergencies.

14.4. Understand how to respond to emergencies.

14.5. Understand how to recover from emergencies.

15. Understand incident management methods.

15.1. Understand how to investigate work-related incidents.

15.1.1. Understand how to investigate accidents.

15.1.2. Understand how to investigate illnesses.

15.2. Understand how to evaluate work-related incidents.

15.2.1. Understand how to evaluate accidents.

15.2.2. Understand how to evaluate illnesses.

16. Understand how to manage work-related health information.

16.1. Understand how to identify and use exposure data.

16.2. Understand how to identify and use illness data.

17. Understand how to protect the confidentiality of health data.

18. Understand basic medical terminology and information.

18.1. Understand data related to injury and illness prevention.

19. Understand legal and other OH&S requirements.

19.1. Understand how to evaluate management systems.

Sector-specific OH&S Knowledge and Skill Expectations

The following examples illustrate the kind of sector-specific or
industry-specific knowledge and skill that occupational health
and safety management auditors need to have. They should:

1. Understand sector-specific organizations.

1.1. Understand sector-specific leadership methods.

1.2. Understand sector-specific organizational cultures.

1.3. Understand sector-specific behavior patterns.

2. Understand sector-specific operations.

2.1. Understand sector-specific processes.

2.1.1. Understand sector-specific process cycles.

2.2. Understand sector-specific equipment.

2.3. Understand sector-specific raw materials.

2.4. Understand sector-specific maintenance methods.

2.5. Understand sector-specific logistical functions.

2.6. Understand sector-specific work flows.

2.6.1. Understand sector-specific work practices.

2.6.2. Understand shift-scheduling practices.

3. Understand typical sector-specific hazards and risks.

3.1. Understand sector-specific health and human factors.

3.2. Understand sector-specific hazardous substances.

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Introduction to Auditing Standard

Plain English Auditing Definitions

Brief Overview of Auditing Standard

ISO 19011 Translated into Plain English

OHSAS 18001 OH&S Plain English Library

How to Plan and Perform Management Audits

How to Audit OH&S Management Audit Programs

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 Updated on December 19, 2015. First published on May 24, 2012.

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