ISO 45001

ISO 45001


The new UNI ISO 45001: 2018 standard on Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems has been in force since 12 March 2018.

ISO 45001 specifies the requirements for an occupational health and safety (OSH) management system and provides guidance for its use, in order to enable organizations to set up safe and healthy workplaces, preventing work-related injuries and illnesses, as well as proactively improving their OSH performance.

The standard is applicable to any organization, regardless of size, type and operation, that wishes to create, implement and maintain a management system to improve occupational health and safety, eliminate hazards and minimize OSH risks.

The standard was developed by adopting the text of the high-level structure ( High-Level Structure - HLS ), common to other ISO standards on management systems, such as UNI ISO 9001:2015 and UNI ISO 14001:2015, with the aim of promoting integration between them.

UNI ISO 45001 includes a national information appendix containing some notes regarding the correct placement of the standard with respect to the legislative framework in force (Legislative Decree 81/2008).

Main news

In setting up the new ISO 45001 standard, attention was paid to a few cornerstones:
  • Construction of the standard with reference to the HLS High-level structure implemented for all ISO standards having a management nature
  • Greater integrability with ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 in the 2015 edition
  • Attention to the context and to the assessment of risks and opportunities
  • Reference to corporate business
  • Involvement and awareness of all parties involved (management, operators, interested parties)
  • Greater involvement and consideration of outsourced processes


The role of interested parties

Compared to the OHSAS 18001 standard, the ISO 45001 standard places greater emphasis on the role of the various subjects involved in the system , from the Top Management, called to exercise a leadership role, to the interested parties, defined as the people or organizations that can exert an influence on decisions or activities or that are influenced by them or perceive to be influenced by them.

A relevant internal interested party is made up of the workers : towards them, the organization is required to activate processes of consultation and participation. Consultation is prior to the decision-making process and pertains to the collection of workers' points of view and requests, while participation consists above all in the direct involvement of workers in the decision-making process.

Among the external interested parties , customers and suppliers are of particular importance, to whom various references are made, especially in the system planning, risk assessment and risk control phases.

The risk-based approach

Compared to the other standards on management systems based on the HLS, the particularity of the ISO 45001 standard is the double meaning of the term risk , both as a system risk and as a risk to occupational health and safety.

In the system planning phase, the organization must identify and evaluate both risks and opportunities for occupational health and safety and other risks and opportunities, i.e. those risks and opportunities which may not have a direct impact on people's health and safety but which could have an influence on the expected results of the management system, such as the continuous improvement of health and safety performance, full compliance with legal requirements and other obligations undertaken and the achievement of improvement objectives.

Procurement and outsourcing

In ISO 45001 the relevance of some topics is amplified such as for example procurement (point 8.1.4 of ISO 45001) in which the emphasis is placed on:
a) activities and operations of contractors that have an impact on the organization;
b) the organization's activities and operations that have an impact on contractors' workers;
c) contractors' activities and operations that impact other stakeholders in the workplace.

In clause Outsourcing, the standard specifies that the organization must ensure that the outsourced functions and processes are controlled and that it is ensured that its outsourcing "agreements" are consistent with legal and other requirements and with the achievement of the objectives set by the OH&S management system.


  • Improvement of the safety culture in the company
  • Greater efficiency and consequent reduction of accidents and wasted time in the production phase
  • Elimination of the turnover for the replacement of the injured/sick
  • Greater control of risks and reduction of dangers through the definition of objectives, goals and responsibilities
  • Control of legislative compliance
  • Improvement of the company's image in terms of occupational health and safety
  • Reduction of insurance costs
  • Reduction of the risks of administrative and criminal sanctions
  • Demonstrate commitment to protect personnel, property and facilities


For all 3 years following the date of publication of the ISO 45001 standard, both the certifications issued against ISO 45001 and the certifications issued against BS OHSAS 18001:2007 will be valid.

During the migration period, the Certification Bodies will be able to issue new BS OHSAS 18001:2007 certifications, but the expiry date of the certifications will correspond to the last expiry date of the migration period (March 2021).

Once the expiry date of the migration period has passed, BS OHSAS 18001 certifications will not enjoy any recognition.

ISO 45001 certifications, under accreditation, can be issued only after the organization has demonstrated the conformity of its system to ISO 45001 to a Certification Body that has been accredited to issue certifications against the new standard.

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