Is Your Company Ready To Migrate To ISO 45001:2018?

migration iso 45001

OHSAS 18001:2007 will expire in less than a year and will be replaced with ISO 45001:2018. After the 12th March 2021, all OHSAS18001 certificates will expire, and you will no longer be certified.

While March 2021 may sound like a long way off, it is important to remember that this is a migration and not just a transition (as was ISO 9001:2015) so you need to plan well in advance. As a mentor of mine always advises his clients, you need to work backwards from the cutoff date to determine when implementation needs to begin. If we then start with the expiry date of OHSAS 18001 in mind, you will realise that the timeline for migration may be tighter than you thought. So with the expiry date of OHSAS 18001 being March 2021, let’s look at the aspects that need to be considered to achieve migration to ISO 45001 in time.

  • Allow the certification body approximately 2 months to evaluate the auditor’s report and for any amendments to be made and finalized. This takes us from March to January 2021
  • Traditionally, most industries are closed for Christmas between early December and mid-January. This takes us to end of November 2020
  • This means that the latest date for the certification audit to be conducted is November 2020
  • The management review meeting (MRM) must be held prior to certification audit so depending on the availability date for the certification audit, the MRM should not be later that the beginning of November 2020.
  • The internal audit must be conducted before the MRM so that the results of the MRM can be discussed and evaluated as part of the MRM. This takes the date for the internal audit to October 2020
  • Your management system must be implemented and running for at least 3 months prior to the certification audit. If the audit takes place in November 2020, your ISO 45001 must have been running since August 2020
  • In order to achieve certification by March 2021, you realistically only have between now and mid August to complete your implementation or migration


What Are The Key Changes In ISO 45001?

  1. Leadership: There is greater focus on Top Management to demonstrate their leadership and commitment regarding the management system. The new standard requires consultation and participation of workers in the planning, development, implementation and continual improvement. It is a much more inclusive standard requiring communication and understanding by all employees.
  2. Risk and Opportunity based: Apart from the OH&S risks, ISO 45001 now incorporates a business orientated approach to identify the broader risks and opportunities that could have an impact on the effectiveness of the business by identifying the business related risks and opportunities.
  3. Annex SL (High-Level structure): ISO 45001 is based on the same high-level structure (HLS) as ISO 9001:2015 and ISO 14001:2015 which results in a common framework for all standards. This makes it easier to integrate with other standards with the same matching clause structure.

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