Prevention System Updates

New standard helps you manage OHS training

Release Date:  Apr 19, 2013

A just-released CSA standard for managing occupational health and safety training offers workplaces their first practical guide to managing an effective OHS training system. CSA Z1001 - Occupational Health and Safety Training provides the essentials for managing a health and safety training program, as well as a method for recognizing OHS training practices.

Implementing the standard will help workplaces identify training needs, set requirements, and select training products and services that will effectively meet their requirements. It also helps organizations work with OHS training providers to ensure that training courses are designed, developed and delivered with the right input and expertise.

"The standard is for any workplace, regardless of size, that needs to select or provide health and safety training," explains Kim Grant, a member of the CSA technical committee responsible for the standard, and Workplace Safety & Prevention Services (WSPS)'s manager of innovation and knowledge solutions. "Throughout the development process, we kept in mind that many businesses, and particularly small businesses, may not have the in-house expertise to create courses or evaluate what course providers offer.

"For instance, if you're creating or reviewing a plan to determine what training you need to do this year, this standard will help you answer a number of essential questions:

  • what training do we need to provide
  • is it up to date
  • if it's training we've created, are we still happy with it
  • if it's training we're buying, are we happy with the training provider
  • is it still meeting our needs
  • has anything changed that the training needs to take into account
  • who's been trained
  • how do we know that they've been training and that they know the content. What's our evidence and documentation?

"If you already have an OHS training program in place," continues Grant, "then you can use the standard to fill in any gaps and ensure a consistent level of quality throughout the program. If you don't have a program, then the standard provides a process you can follow from beginning to end. It's pretty straightforward."

Included with the standard are complementary annexes. Among them:

  • training matrices for tracking and record-keeping
  • course evaluation form
  • training assessment survey
  • training considerations for
    • joint health and safety committees
    • supervisor training
    • new worker orientation.

Grant notes that the standard also offers value beyond health and safety. "Exchange 'risk' with 'competency,' and you could apply the standard to an organization's entire training needs."

CSA Z1001 - Occupational Health and Safety Training is part of CSA's growing portfolio of OHS management systems standards, based on CSA Z1000 - Occupational Health and Safety Management. Learn more about CSA Z1001.

How WSPS can help

  • Check out our extensive selection of training options, including classroom, self-study, and e-courses.
  • Attend "Is Your Occupational Health and Safety Training Program Up to Standard," a half-day professional development course offered on April 29 in conjunction with Partners in Prevention 2013 Health & Safety Conference & Trade Show, April 30-May 1 in Mississauga. See the preliminary guide for more information.
  • Read "11 tips for maximizing training" (HSO Network News, December 2011).