OHSAS 18001 is Dead – Long Live ISO 45001!


BS OHSAS 18001 is being replaced by ISO 45001, which was published in March 2018 by the International Standards Organisation. Organisations which are certified to BS OHSAS 18001 must migrate to ISO 45001 by March 2021 if they wish to retain a recognised certification.

OHSAS 18001, the Occupational Health and Safety Assessment Series, (officially BS OHSAS 18001) is a British Standard for occupational health and safety management systems. Compliance with it enables organisations to demonstrate that they have a recognised system in place for occupational health and safety.

ISO 45001 is an international standard, ensuring enhanced compatibility with other standards, such as ISO 9001 (Quality) and ISO 14001 (Environment). It makes it easier to implement and integrate into a comprehensive business management system, giving increased value for users.

If your organisation already complies with OHSAS 18001, you will recognise most of the requirements of ISO 45001. However, there are quite a few changes from OHSAS 18001 that you must prepare for in order to migrate and comply with ISO 45001.


Key changes in ISO 45001

    • Business Context: Considers external and internal issues, introduces new clauses for systematic determination and monitoring of the business context.
    • Workers and other interested parties: Introduces enhanced focus on the needs and expectations for workers and other interested parties and demonstrates worker involvement.
    • Risk and opportunity management: States that companies are to determine, consider and, where necessary, take action to address any risks or opportunities that may impact (either positively or negatively) the ability of the management system to deliver its intended results, including enhanced health and safety at the workplace.
    • Leadership and management commitment: ISO 45001 has a stronger emphasis on top management to actively engage and take accountability for the effectiveness of the management system.
    • Objectives and Performance: Strengthened focus on objectives as drivers for improvements and performance evaluation.
    • Extended requirements related to:

    Participation: consultation and participation of workers;
    Communication: More prescriptive in respect of the “mechanics” of communication, including determination of what, when and how to communicate;
    Procurement: Including outsourced processes, and contractors.


If you need help or advice in transitioning from OHSAS 18001 or achieving certification under ISO 45001 then please contact us.