Joint adoption of international occupational health and safety standard

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AS/NZS ISO 45001:2018 Occupational health and safety management systems – Requirements with guidance for use has just been published. The new joint standard is an identical adoption of the international standard ISO 45001:2018.

AS/NZS ISO 45001:2018 provides a robust and effective set of processes for improving work safety in global supply chains. Designed to help organisations of all sizes and industries, this standard is expected to reduce workplace injuries and illnesses around the world.

The new standard is based on the common elements found in all of ISO’s management systems standards and uses a simple Plan-Do-Check-Act model, which provides a framework for organisations to plan what they need to put in place in order to minimise the risk of harm. The measures should address concerns that can lead to long-term health issues and absence from work, as well as those that give rise to accidents.

AS/NZS ISO 45001:2018 Occupational health and safety management systems – Requirements is available to purchase from our webshop.

Conformance and the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015

AS/NZS ISO 45001 does not specifically reflect all the obligations and duties set out in the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015. When using AS/NZS ISO 45001, conformance to the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 should not be assumed.

All standards are voluntary unless cited in legislation. AS/NZS ISO 45001 won’t be cited in the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 or regulations under the Act, until the Government decides to review the legislation.

AS/NZS 4801:2001 remains cited in the Asbestos Regulations under the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 and will continue to be cited until the Government decides to review the legislation. Consideration may be given to the status of AS/NZS 4801 by the committee at a later stage.

For information about the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 and conformance to the Act please visit WorkSafe New Zealand’s website. WorkSafe has also released an article regarding AS/NZS ISO 45001.

Who should use AS/NZS ISO 45001?

AS/NZS ISO 45001 is applicable to all organisations, regardless of size, industry, or nature of business. It is designed to be integrated into an organisation’s existing management processes and follows the same high-level structure as other ISO management system standards, such as ISO 9001 and ISO 14001.


AS/NZS ISO 45001 enables organisations to put in place an occupational health and safety (OHS) management system. This will help them manage their OHS risks and improve their OHS performance by developing and implementing effective policies and objectives.

Key potential benefits from the use of the standard include:

  • an increase in organisational resilience through proactive risk prevention, innovation, and continual improvement
  • the ability to demonstrate brand responsibility by committing to safe, healthy and sustainable work
  • one global occupational health and safety system for all businesses, of all sizes.


Certification to AS/NZS ISO 45001 is not a requirement of the standard but can be a useful tool to demonstrate that you meet its criteria.

You can search the JAS-ANZ directory for accredited organisations that can assess and certify you to AS/NZS ISO 45001.

BS OHSAS 18001 – Occupational Health and Safety Management

The British Standards Institute (BSI) has communicated that ISO 45001 replaces BS OHSAS 18001 and organisations will need to transition to ISO 45001 in the next three years.

Additional resources

SafePlus is a voluntary toolkit for businesses for health and safety performance improvement. It has been developed by WorkSafe New Zealand, ACC and the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE).

ISO/IEC TS 17021-10:2018 is a dedicated conformity assessment document to ensure auditors have the right skills to do the job well. It is designed to complement ISO 45001:2018.

Published in consumer and occupational safety.

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