The UK Health & Safety Executive’s Occupational Safety and Health Consultants Register (OSHCR) external website is now open to the public. Businesses will be able to search the database for consultants according to keyword(s), county, industry or topic, free of charge.
OSHCR meets several of the aspirations for improved competence in external health and safety advice, outlined in the Government commissioned report on UK health and safety, Common Sense Common Safety external website.
Many businesses develop in-house competence to manage their health and safety risks and do not need to use health and safety consultants. Other employers, however, may need to purchase additional help. Health and safety consultants registered on OSHCR will have a status recognised by the participating bodies in the OSHCR scheme.
Before you approach a consultant, however, have you considered managing your own health and safety? You probably manage many areas of your own business, or employ staff with the experience, qualifications or skills to help you with your business. HSE provides tools to help you manage health and safety.
In general, lower risks are more easily managed. The health and safety toolbox- How to control risks at work – provides advice to help businesses, identify, assess and control common risks in the workplace. It offers practical advice, tools and case studies. If you work in a low risk office-based environment, consider using our simplified risk assessment tool. Alternatively, if you have another business, we provide example risk assessments for workplaces.
However, if you are not confident of your ability to manage all health and safety in-house; or you need to know that what you are doing is necessary, sensible and proportionate for your business, you may require a consultant. OSHCR will help you find a consultant with experience in your work. The register enables you to search different categories and provides you with a profile of each consultant, if required.
If you are looking for specialist help or advice on a particular industry or topic (for example, asbestos or a specific engineering issue), you can refer to our sources of specialist advice page.
As a dutyholder, it is your responsibility to ensure that if you use a consultant, they are competent and suitable, based upon your particular business needs.
The professional bodies and other stakeholders involved are: British Occupational Hygiene Society (BOHS); British Safety Council; British Safety Industry Federation (BSIF); Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH); Health and Safety Executive Northern Ireland (HSENI); Institute of Ergonomics and Human Factors (IEHF); International Institute of Risk and Safety Management (IIRSM); Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH); National Examination Board in Occupational Safety and Health (NEBOSH); Royal Environmental Health Institute of Scotland (REHIS); and Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (ROSPA).