Performance indicators for an Occupational Health and Safety (OH&S) management system are an important tool used by organizations to measure the effectiveness of their programs in reducing potential and actual OH&S risks. These performance indicators also provide information for organizations to:
- Evaluate their OH&S management system.
- Identify improvement opportunities.
- Adapt objectives, goals and strategies.
- Raise awareness among decision-makers and everyone in an organization about the benefits of OH&S programs.
- Take timely preventive measures.
- Communicate ideas, thoughts and values.
Performance indicators should be specific, easy to obtain, consistent over time, accurate and transparent in order to serve as a valuable tool in improving an organization’s OH&S performance. There are no fixed performance indicators that must be used by all organizations; however, below, a number of typical performance indicators of an OHSAS 18001 management system are mentioned.
Performance indicators for OHSAS 18001 communication and leadership management:
- Percentage of management planned visits to the job site carried out on a specific time frame.
- Degree of management commitment, measured through surveys in the workplace.
- Percentage of planned formal reviews of the OH&S management system programs conducted over a period of time.
- The percentage of training activities carried out vs. those that were planned.
- The percentage of investigations of accidents / incidents / nonconformities completed vs. those that were required.
Performance indicators for measurements of the effects of accidental losses:
- Number of accidents.
- Number of days lost to illness.
- Number of days lost due to accidents.
- Percentage of workers with occupational diseases.
Performance indicators for basic and immediate causes of accidents:
- Percentage of accidents caused by getting trapped.
- Percentage of accidents caused by strokes.
- Percentage of accidents caused by cuts.
- Percentage of accidents caused by falls.
Performance indicators for OH&S resources management:
- Level of funding provided to the OH&S programs as a percentage of operational funding.
- Percentage of purchase orders with specific OH&S requirements.
- OH&S approved budget against the actual budget spent.
Every organization is different and each should take the necessary time to define the performance indicators that will serve as tools in improving their OH&S management system; ones that will help management make sound decisions to maintain, improve and innovate their processes and keep their workers and everyone involved in their activities safe.