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The latest stage in the development process of the ISO 45001 standard was reached on January 14, 2016 with the publication of ISO/DIS 45001. This draft international standard (DIS) explains the potential requirements for an Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems (OHSMS). It identifies the emerging changes predicted to be in the final version of the standard, planned for Q4 2016.

When it is finally issued, ISO 45001 will be the first ISO Standard for an OHSMS. ISO/DIS 45001 incorporates major stakeholder inputs and builds upon commonly used OHSAS 18001 specifications.


ISO/DIS 45001 adopts the clause structure stipulated in Annex SL – the mandatory framework for all new and revised ISO management system standards. This assures that the final version of ISO 45001 will be aligned with other management systems standards (e.g. ISO 9001, ISO 14001). The use of the Annex SL structure will ensure that OHSMS requirements are presented coherently and rationally closer to business language.

Other important changes proposed for ISO/DIS 45001 are:

  • A greater emphasis on organizational context, with organizations obliged to reflect on what society expects from them concerning occupational health and safety management
  • Based on the Annex SL, the encouragement to apply risk-based thinking with regard to the establishment, implementation and maintenance of the organization’s OHSMS itself, not just the occupational health and safety (OHS) risks
  • Assignment of responsibility for an OHSMS on top management in organizations adopting an OHSMS (versus delegation of accountabilities to health and safety managers)
  • A prerequisite for organizations to account for how their contractors and suppliers cope with risks
  • The replacement of the term “Documented Information” with “Documents and Records” allowing for the utilization of electronic information not contained in a formal document system


The intent of ISO DIS/45001 is to provide an organization with a high level, conceptual comprehension of the significant issues that can affect the management of its responsibilities toward individuals working under the control of its OHSMS.


Closely aligned with the focus on organizational context is the requirement to adopt a risk-based approach during the development and execution of an OHSMS. An organization must recognize the risks and opportunities that need to be tackled to guarantee that the OHSMS can accomplish its intended outcomes. The organization must also strategize how to deal with these risks and opportunities, then implement and evaluate the effectiveness of planned actions into its OHSMS processes.


Top management must now exhibit its direct involvement with the OHSMS, considering OHS performance in strategic planning, conveying the importance of an effective and compliant OHSMS, and leading organizational culture with regard to the OHSMS.


An organization must ensure that outsourced processes (including those carried out by contractors and suppliers in the workplace) affecting its OHSMS are identified and controlled.


The term "documented information" replaces "documents and records". Evidence from administered information not held in a formal document system, such as electronic information held on tablets and smart phones, will now be accepted.


A three-month review period is currently being done by the National member bodies of ISO. If a positive outcome is achieved, the next step will be the publication of a final draft international standard (FDIS).

A copy of the ISO/DIS 45001 standard can be purchased from the ISO Store.

The official ISO 45001 Working Group (ISO/PC 283) is responsible for developing and publishing the ISO 45001 standard.

We will issue further news and updates regarding the development of ISO 45001 as they become available.


To help you to understand ISO/DIS 45001, we offer the following training courses:

  • Awareness Training: ISO/DIS 45001 Requirements
  • Annex SL
  • Risk-based thinking

On request, we can provide a gap analysis that outlines the changes you must make to transition from OHSAS 18001 to ISO/DIS 45001.

For more information, please contact:

Roger S. Villanueva
Business/Certification Manager
SGS Philippines, Inc.
t: +63 2 784 9400 local 711


SGS is the world’s leading inspection, verification, testing and certification company. SGS is recognized as the global benchmark for quality and integrity. With more than 85,000 employees, SGS operates a network of over 1,800 offices and laboratories around the world.