Are WHS inspections and audits necessary?

Health And Safety Audits And Inspections; What You Need To Do

Health and safety audits and inspections go hand in hand with each other and are an imperative part of keeping your workplace free from WHS risks. Regardless of the size of your business, it is so important that you take a proactive approach to providing a safe workplace and not just assume everything is fine until a problem is brought to your attention or an incident occurs. That’s a sure fire way to be slapped with an increase in your WorkCover premium and worse still is the reason why people are now actually doing jail time over workplace incidents their staff have been involved in.

So what are WHS inspections and audits really anyway?

An inspection is the process of examining your workplace (you can inspect the whole workplace or target a specific area of operation) to identify any hazards that may be putting your employees at risk. This process can be either an informal walk around the site or a formal, planned inspection.

An audit is a documented method of reviewing your systems of safe work as they are carried out in the workplace, to ascertain whether they comply with WHS legislative requirements, or whether they need to be amended.

How often are WHS inspections and audits necessary?

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How often should you be conducting inspections and audits?

The following table gives you a guide as to the frequency that different areas of your workplace should be inspected and audited and by whom. Remember every workplace is different so getting some advice on what would be considered by law as ‘reasonable’ is recommended.

Assessment TypeFrequencyBy
External Audit3 yearlyIndependent assessor
Internal AuditAnnuallyInternal specialist
Walk-through InspectionQuarterlySenior management
Walk-through InspectionMonthlyDepartmental managers
Checklist InspectionWeeklySupervisors and Health and Safety Reps
Pre-shift InspectionDailyEmployees
Safety Critical CheckPre-startOperators
Hazard ReportingOngoingEmployees
Are WHS inspections and audits necessary

“HR Tactics”, HR Consultants Brisbane”, “Outsourced HR”

HR Tactics – HR Consultants Brisbane – Outsourced HR

Are WHS inspections and audits necessary?

This information was provided with the intention of helping you find more clarity, confidence and peace of mind as you navigate your own journey as an employer. I would love to hear your thoughts on this, and if you think someone else would enjoy it please feel free to share it on.


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About The Author
Jackie Strachan

Jackie Strachan

Jackie’s passion for creating better Human Resources outcomes stems from over 20 years’ experience in the field and a drive for finding innovative solutions.
Her HR career has seen her hold both operational and strategic HR management roles across a vast array of industry sectors including retail, financial services, child protection, professional services, dental, state emergency services, Department of Justice, agency recruitment and IT.
Combining her experience in each specialised area of Human Resources (such as learning & development, recruitment, WHS and employee relations etc), Jackie leads HR Tactics with an industry-respected foundation of knowledge.