Get Your Management System on the Right Track With ANSI/ASSE Z10

ANSI/ASSE Z10-2012 is one of the most important occupational health and safety standard in the U.S., says ASSE’s Director of Practices and Standards Tim Fisher, who explains that the standard establishes requirements for an effective, comprehensive management system. “Often, safety and health programs tend to be a collection of well-intentioned initiatives competing for management attention and necessary resources,” he notes. “Lacking a system to integrate activities, organizations continue to fight fires and chase a stream of symptoms (injuries and illnesses) caused by management system deficiencies.” This is where Z10 can help. The simple, yet powerful, requirements ensure that processes and business systems are integrated. This mobilizes an organization for continuous improvement in safety and health, Fisher says.

The standard is gaining momentum both in the U.S. and globally. It has been submitted to International Organization for Standardization as a resource, and for possible adoption, as that group works to develop a global occupational safety and health management standard. “There is no question that Z10 and its implementation in both the U.S. and globally will significantly affect SH&E professionals and the practice of safety,” Fisher concludes.

Several areas have been improved in the 2012 version compared to the 2005 version. These include:

  • System performance
  • Planning—system versus operational planning
  • Conducting initial reviews
  • Risk assessment at both the system and operational level
  • Incident investigation and root-cause failures
  • Competence assessment
  • Design review
  • Management of change
  • Enhanced appendices covering employee participation, risk assessment, contractors and procurement checklists, and audits.

Learn more about the standard in the Society’s updated tech brief or visit ASSE’s online store.