What is an OHS Management System (OHSMS)?
An OHSMS is a set of plans, actions and procedures to systematically manage health and safety in the workplace. It is actively endorsed by a committed employer to:
- provide a safe and healthy workplace and prevent/reduce the incidence of illness and injury to employees, volunteer workers, visitors and contractors
- identify workplace hazards and assess and control risks
- gain involvement of managers, supervisors and employees and their representatives in health and safety matters
- provide information and training for employees at all levels so they can work safely
- measure and continuously improve the OHS management system.
The OHS Management System is reviewed and updated as required and in its entirety every two years. See OHS Management System Updates page for further information.
If you are unsure of a term used within the OHS Management System, refer to the Defined Defined Health and Safety Terms webpage.
How the Department manages OHS
Health and safety is an issue that affects everyone in the workplace including employees, students, parents, volunteer workers, contractors and visitors. Effective safety management will help the Department improve employee wellbeing, workplace climate and operations.
The Department's OHS management system (OHSMS) was developed to clarify management of OHS and improve workplace safety for schools and workplaces. The standardised and practical nature of the OHSMS makes it easy to implement and maintain. This will help drive continuous safety improvement by supporting Principals and Managers to deliver improved educational outcomes.
Implementing the OHSMS
It is a requirement that all schools and workplaces fully implement the Department's OHSMS. Implementation will depend on the size and type of school or workplace. A secondary school may have a more complex risk profile than a primary school due to the nature of activities undertaken and is likely to have a greater number of risks to identify and control. This may also require a greater time and resource commitment during initial implementation.
The Employee Safety and Wellbeing Branch has developed a guide which provides a practical, step by step approach to implementation of the Departments OHSMS in schools and workplaces.
OHSMS Implementation Guide (pdf - 4.41mb).
The Department's OHS Advisory Service is also available for schools to contact to access practical OHS advice and support. This includes arranging for an OHS consultant to provide onsite assistance with the implementation of the OHSMS and its ongoing management. The OHS Advisory Service can be contacted on 1300 074 715.