Get “competent” Health & Safety advice

As an employer, you must appoint someone competent to help you meet your health and safety duties. A competent person is someone with the necessary skills, knowledge and experience to manage health and safety.

You could appoint (one or a combination of):

  • yourself
  • one or more of your workers
  • someone from outside your business

If you are not confident of your ability to manage all health and safety in-house, you may need some external help or advice and this is where Complisafe can help.

As professionally qualified and highly experienced consultants we know our abilities and limitations. It’s certainly not just about the qualifications as these don’t measure or take into account experience.

What to look for when employing a Health & Safety consultant

When engaging with a consultancy or indeed employing a Health and Safety professional directly, do not rely on qualifications alone such as Nebosh or a degree, as their is so much more to getting the right support. Below we list out some examples of what to ask/check (not exhaustive):

  1. Do you have relevant experience in this industry and can you describe what it is you did in relation to Health and Safety?
  2. Have you written a risk assessment personally? Can you describe this and how was it used/implemented?
  3. Have you had any experiences with enforcement agencies such as the local authority or HSE? Please discuss.
  4. Are you registered on the OSHCR (Occupational Safety and Health Consultants Register)?
  5. How do you keep up to date with current legislation? How will you keep us up to date?
  6. Can you give examples of what you have done to support companies similar to ours?
  7. How quickly will you get back to us with any questions/calls/emails? Who will be our main point of contact?
  8. Are you able to support our training needs in any way?
  9. What soft skills do you bring with your professional qualifications? Please discuss?
  10. Can you help with third party accreditations and questionnaires?
  11. Do you have professional indemnity insurance?
  12. Can you describe what success you have had in delivering your services over the years? When have things gone wrong and what did you do?
  13. If we are not happy with the support and services provided what can we do as your client?
  14. Can you provide relevant references and contact details?

A good consultancy will not tie you up in complex long term contracts that last for years and that you cannot get out of without a financial penalty. Some may even offer a short trial period so you can get to know them and how they work. It’s very important to be clear on what you want and your expectations and to get this specified in a simple agreement.

Meet the consultant not just the sales person or Director. You may meet a sales person/director first but ask to speak with or meet the consultant who will look after you as its likely you will not see the sales person again once signed up. This is so important for a personal relationship to develop, a consultant has to spend time with you and get to know how you work so you should meet them first before signing up.

The OSHCR is a great place to start as you will find professionals on here who have met the high standards required to be part of the scheme. The HSE promote and encourage this scheme so get the consultants name and look them up!

Complisafe Health and Safety Consultants are loyal, supportive and caring and whilst we look appealing, we understand and are humble enough to know that we may not be right for each other! Please contact Complisafe for a no obligation chat.

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You can also call us directly on 0333 577 2700.

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