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27 Dec 2019

How to become an ISO 45001:2018 lead auditor

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If you have been involved in auditing your organization’s Occupational Health & Safety Management System (OHSMS), verifying that you meet the requirements of the ISO 45001:2018 standard, you may be wondering about the next step in your auditing career. Or, you might want to become a health & safety Certification body. In both cases, you might consider becoming an ISO 45001 Lead Auditor – read further to learn how.

What is a lead auditor, and how do you become one?

The lead auditor becomes necessary when you have a certification audit, especially when this audit has more than one auditor – in such case, the main person to lead the audit team is called “lead auditor.” If you want to become an external (certification) lead auditor, here are the steps that will be expected of you.

  1. Prior experience

To audit ISO 45001, and the OHSMS, you should have proper formal education and proper OH&S work experience. Working within a job that includes OH&S responsibilities is a must.

  • Pass the lead auditor exam

The ISO 45001 Lead Auditor training course includes a final written exam on the last day, and you will need to pass this exam to be considered for a lead auditor position. This means you must not only study and pass the exam, but also attend this official training for lead auditors, and if you miss a single day you will not be able to take the exam.

  • Find a certification body 

You will need to find a certification body that not only performs ISO 45001 certification audits, but also needs an auditor. Many will already have their necessary auditors.

  • Go through training 

Just finding a certification body that is interested does not mean you will start auditing right away. You will then go through stages defined by the certification body, such as first becoming an observer, then a co-auditor, and then a lead auditor. This will help you to learn how certification auditing works, and how it differs from your experience as an internal auditor.

  • Gain audit experience

Before you can lead a team, you will have to take part in certification audits as an audit team member. Once you have completed several audits, you can then lead the audit team.

So, how do you start on your path to becoming a lead auditor? Lead auditors are, first and foremost, auditors – and therefore need to have the competencies of all auditors. To start with, all auditors need to be able to perform an effective audit. These competencies help the auditor to properly gather and evaluate audit evidence to see if the activities under audit are occurring according to the planned arrangements. These competencies are needed for all auditors, including lead auditors, and include good knowledge of the ISO 45001 standard, knowledge of risk and the company structure, and many other skills for assessing processes.

Being able to be a good lead auditor means fully understanding the audit process, so it is critical that a lead auditor first understand how to perform effective audits.

Learn to audit first, and then work towards becoming an ISO 45001 lead auditor

It cannot be stressed enough that becoming a good lead auditor requires you to start as a good auditor. To become a good auditor, first start by learning how to perform process audits and understanding the ISO 45001 standard (or any other ISO standards that are applicable to your organization). Once you understand how to do this, practicing and using these skills while focusing on improvement are paramount to becoming a lead auditor.

So, if you have come to a point where you have gained some skill in auditing, and you want to consider working towards becoming a certified ISO 45001 lead auditor, look into the available lead auditor training courses that you can take. This could be the next step toward an exciting career of helping companies with the certification of their management systems.

What ISO 45001 training and certification is available if you’re an individual?

Training in the concepts of ISO 45001 is available, and there are a range of course options for individuals to choose from. Only the first of these can lead to certification for the individual to be able to audit for a certification body, but the others are very useful for those who will be using these skills within their own company:

ISO 45001 Lead Auditor Course This is a five-day training course focused on understanding the ISO 45001 OHSMS standard and being able to use it for auditing management systems against these requirements. The course includes a test at the end to verify knowledge and competence, and it is only with an accredited course that an individual can become approved to audit for a certification body.

ISO 45001 Internal Auditor Course – This is commonly a two- or three-day course that is based on the lead auditor course above, but does not include the test for competence, so this is most useful for someone beginning to do internal audits within a company.

ISO 45001 Implementation Course and Awareness – Several courses are offered that provide knowledge of ISO 45001 and how to implement it. These can be one- or two-day courses, and can even include online e-learning sessions as a method of teaching the material. These courses are good for those who need an overview of the ISO 45001 standard, or those who will be involved in the implementation within a company, and many are more economical than investing in the lead auditor course for those involved at this level.

There are a number of accredited training organizations around the world where you can gain individual qualifications in ISO 45001.

IAS Expertise in ISO 45001 Training

    IAS certification is an accredited certification registrar providing different types of certificate which include the ISO 45001 Training for various organizations or companies.  Our Organization (IAS) expertise in the industry is second to none as we boast of best hands that have gotten relevant experience in ISO 45001 Training. Should you need to get ISO 45001 Training in India, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at IAS Pvt. ltd. IAS mainly focusing to conduct audit and ensure everything is properly placed towards getting your ISO 45001 Training.

We also provide ISO 45001 Training in Bangladesh also, To visit our Accreditation page (click here).

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