ISO 45001 management of change
Why do we need to change?
Change is never 'easy', because humans have an inherent friction to moving out of their comfort zones into the uncomfortable.
So for the most part, there needs to be a strong reason that people, companies or any entity embarks on change.
One of the strongest reasons to change something is because of a change in regulation or law - and this is what is happening for many companies looking towards ISO 45001 management of change procedures.
There has been a recent surge in the need for ISO 45001 management of change in the last couple of years, which will continue through this year as some of the most heavily industrialised countries in the world including the United States is shifting its occupational health and safety standards away from the old OHSAS 18001 standard to ISO 45001.
Regulators, workers and companies alike will enjoy many aspects of shifting towards ISO and integrating their management systems more inline with the ISO, but there will also be some change management required, with old habits, processes and systems needing to be updated and upgraded.
We need change because standards change, and standard changes also provide an opportunity for broader change.
If done right, ISO 45001 management of change procedures can not only help you smooth your transition but push you out of the other side stronger on all fronts.
What are the key areas of ISO 45001 change management?
The largest single component of any company standard is the management system. A management system is comprimised of a company's procedures and processes, which is typically grounded in documents and forms. Some companies have management systems for quality, safety, environmental and other individual use cases, while other companies have a single integrated management system.
Embarking on ISO 45001 change management involves updating and tweaking the procedures and documents inline with the new accreditation, and it also involves upskilling or changing behaviours around how to interact with the management system.
As an example, many of the ISO 45001 requirements are more 'strict' than the OHSAS 18001 requirements, which means the systems typically have to be smarter or more advanced.
The largest source of ISO 45001 management of change (and change outside of ISO standards) has been the increased shift from paper-based management systems and traditional document formats like word, excel and PDF to digital tools, softwares and apps.
Some companies see this change as hard to manage, and it can be with certain people, but that change is becoming less and less marked as softwares become more and more user friendly - and even more dramatically better than those old document formats.
In fact, once a company has updated their procedures and systems, the last phase of the management of change procedure - monitoring success - becomes very easy.
Digital tools give full visibility and transparency over what is working, who is doing what, and what is happening. This makes it easy to manage the change process and provide support and help to areas or people who are struggling.
Ensure your ISO 45001 management of change is done the easy way
Getting your ISO 45001 change management procedure right
Most certification and accreditation processes have always involved a number of stakeholders including auditors, consultants, workers and companies.
In today's more system driven and automated work landscape, software providers have become a critical resource for companies embroiled or planning for ISO 45001 management of change.
These companies have the tools and expertise to make your change management easy. They understand how to convert your existing standards and processes into the new standard; they understand how to get more of your workers adopting and participating in the management system, and they understand how to ensure your management system is working the way you want it to.
Many management system providers and software platforms are well accustomed to easing the ISO 45001 management of change procedures with you, which can expedite and smooth the process for everyone involved.
Change management is never easy, no many how many times it's been done and delivered, but leaning on those who can help and moving forward with your plans for change is the best strategy.
Avoiding change is much more risky than managing change.