But what actually defines competence?
Essentially competence is defined as an individual who has sufficient training, experience, knowledge or ‘other qualities’ within a particular field of expertise – e.g. health and safety.
To assist you in identifying if you have a competent individual in your organisation, you should ask yourself the following questions:
Having considered the list of questions above, if you and have identified that your organisation has a competence person gap from a health and safety perspective, you have two options to resolve this:
Every organisation is required to comply with all relevant health and safety legislation, and this is a legal responsibility that cannot be passed on to anyone else, however it is important to note that your competent person will have a degree of liability.
If you appoint an external ‘competent person’ they will assist you in making sure that you are complying with your legal obligations, through their knowledge, understanding and expertise. This could mean that you appoint a dedicated consultant to be assigned to your business, who will conduct periodic visits and carry out workplace inspections. Your competent person should also be on hand to provide support whenever you need it, for instance by phone or email.
At Pragma and Associates, we have over 20 years’ experience in providing occupational health and safety services to clients of all sizes across a range of sectors. We know what good looks like, and our clients can support this.
We can assist you by acting as your ‘competent person’ to ensure that you are complying with the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999.
If you would like to find out more about our competent person services, please contact David Paveley.