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The misconception of accreditation: more than just a tick box exercise

In today’s business world, making sure everyone is safe and healthy is super important!  Accreditations play a pivotal role in showcasing an organisation's commitment, competence, and compliance whether in health and safety, quality management, or other fields and are often perceived as a formality, a bureaucratic task to complete.  Many assume that obtaining accreditation is merely a tick box exercise.  However, this oversimplified view not only undermines the rigorous process but also overlooks the depth of commitment and evidence required.

The reality is that contrary to the tick box mentality, gaining accreditation is a comprehensive and time-intensive journey.  Most accrediting bodies require substantial evidence to ensure businesses meet the required standards consistently. This evidence collection is not conjured overnight; it is accumulated over time, often spanning at least 12 months.

Many accreditations offer multiple levels, such as basic, intermediate and advanced.  The depth and breadth of evidence required increases correspondingly with each level, demanding a more comprehensive demonstration of the specific standards.  The evidence may include documentation, records or reports which showcase a consistent commitment to compliance and improvement. Understanding the distinct criteria of the chosen accreditation is necessary to navigate the evidence maze.

When embarking on the process of obtaining health and safety accreditations, it is crucial to be mindful of several common evidence requirements.  These encompass a wide range of elements, including the implementation of robust policies and reviews. Thorough risk assessments and method statements also play an important role in demonstrating a commitment to proactive safety measures.  Diligent documentation of incident reporting and procedures, training records, as well as audits and inspections are also required. Accreditation bodies also require evidence of communication between employers and employees, suppliers and clients for example safety meetings, site inductions, toolbox talks.

In conclusion, the journey to accreditation is far from a mere checkbox exercise; it is a comprehensive commitment to ensuring the highest standards of safety and compliance. By understanding the process and what is needed to fulfil evidence requirements, organisations can embed reliable processes into their organisation and ensure their journey to accreditation and beyond is simplified and straightforward.


If you need any assistance with preparing or applying for accreditation, please feel free to contact us.

Written by Samantha White


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