Find out what's involved in the role of a health and safety manager.
Health and safety managers are responsible for delivering compliance to health and safety regulations and industry specific standards. To ensure this goal is met, those in the role will need to perform regular audits, report on ways to minimise risk and regularly review and update policies and procedures.
An essential part of the role of a health and safety manager is to communicate these findings with key stakeholders. Professionals will also be expected to be able to effectively educate and train relevant parties and motivate and change behaviours at all levels to ensure compliance is met.
- Advising, developing and implementing health and safety policies and procedures.
- Conducting risk assessments, reporting on outcomes and advising on strategy.
- Monitoring and reporting of regulatory compliance.
- Providing regular updates to policies and documents in line with best practice and latest legislation.
- Establishing procedures for the implementation of statutory requirements including Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH), Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR), Display Screen Equipment and Risk Assessments and updating relevant records.
- Delivering health and safety training to existing staff and new starters.
- Providing advice on eliminating risk at work.
- Recording, reporting and investigating accidents at work.
- Keeping a register of first aiders and ensuring they are appropriately trained.
- Working with relevant inspectors and trade unions.
- Through inspection and audit, provide assurance of compliance with safety policies.
- Formulate effective communication channels with relevant parties and ensure that necessary notices are displayed and reviewed.
- Establish procedures to ensure the safeguarding of visitors.
- Provide a hazardous waste disposal service where appropriate.
- Deliver training at all levels that satisfies and meets regulatory requirements but also educates and informs.
- Carry out periodic site inspections where appropriate.
- Manage all health and safety targets.
- Devise a system for accurate record keeping and provide statistics and relevant health and safety data for the purposes of monitoring and improving.
- Formulate strategy for the implementation of industry specific health and safety goals and compliance requirements.
- Take responsibility for continued professional development.
- Attend industry events where necessary and keep abreast of latest thinking and advice.
- Interested in and passionate about health and safety
- Attention to detail and ability to follow procedures
- Solid communication skills, both written and verbal
- Great presentation skills
- An analytical mind
- Ability to liaise with a variety of stakeholders
- Keen eye for regulation and compliance
- Skilled in devising and delivering training at all levels
- Calm under pressure
- Exceptional organisational and planning skills
- Skilled at turning regulation into positive change
- Where required, the ability to manage compliance across a multi-site operation
- IT literate
- A driving licence is often required
- Chartered Membership of the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (CMIOSH)
- The General Certificate from the National Examination Board in Occupational Safety and Health (NEBOSH) is a minimum requirement, with many employers seeking candidates with the NEBOSH Diploma for a management position
- Thorough knowledge of the range of health and safety regulations
- Industry specific qualifications may be required where health and safety regulations apply to that sector and type of work
- Post qualifying experience in a health and safety role, ideally with around five years’ experience.
- Industry specific experience is highly desirable with an in-depth knowledge of sector specific health and safety regulations
- Experience in managing compliance audits, formulating strategy and implementing new policies and procedures
Working hours will usually be Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm but may vary according to industry and sector. According to the operation, there may be a requirement to work some irregular hours and shifts as well as be on call in case of an emergency.
A health and safety manager can expect to earn around £30,000 - £50,000. These figures are a guide and salaries will vary according to sector, location, seniority, experience and company. Some positions will offer a company car as part of the package if there is a requirement to drive.
Health and safety careers in oil, gas, power, construction and IT will usually offer higher salaries.
With an increasing number of regulations and an important focus to stay safe at work, professionals with health and safety credentials and experience are in demand. For those that have some experience already in the field there is potential to be appointed to a number of roles including but not limited to further health and safety positions, consultancy roles or to board level positions.
Your next steps may include:
- Operations director
- Global environmental, health and safety manager
- Health and safety consultant