Features

Your consultation

As IOSH’s review of membership grades progresses, we reflect on early feedback and the case for questioning.

I write this not long after we have announced our membership grades review and I am reflecting on some of the early feedback we have received via email, forums and various discussions in social networks and good old-fashioned conversation. 

Inevitably, comments from members in the first few weeks have been mixed – with a large cohort of members from more than 100 countries, that is no surprise. Much of the feedback has been positive but plenty of questions and concerns have been expressed too. This is all part of a healthy exchange of views, which I hope will continue throughout the consultation. 

Change is never easy but there is no denying that our sector has evolved significantly. It is the Chartered Institution of Occupational Safety and Health’s role to ensure that our standards and the support we provide to members keep pace with that change. Importantly, we must ensure that our members, as IOSH-accredited professionals, are equipped to meet the needs of their employers.

In recent years, leading OSH professionals and employers have become more vocal about the wider range of skills, knowledge and competencies required to manage corporate risk and deliver a sustainable workforce. 

As Neil Lennox, head of group safety and insurance at Sainsbury’s says: “It is critical that safety professionals have their voice heard in the boardroom now more than ever. To do that we need people to join our profession who can share the message that ‘good safety is good business’ and clearly articulate how we contribute to corporate governance and profitability.”

This is where the research that informed our newly updated competency framework comes in. 

Feedback indicated that employers consider strong technical skills to be ‘a given’. In addition, they need OSH professionals that are equipped to influence and drive change so they can play an integral role in shaping safer, healthier and more sustainable workplace cultures.

Our competency framework combines insights from 250,000 Blueprint assessments with qualitative contributions from focus groups worldwide, comprising employers, regulators, educators and trainers. We also analysed and benchmarked our competencies with other national and international standards in occupational safety and health. We are confident that the refreshed framework is an accurate and comprehensive reflection of the competencies required by businesses for the foreseeable future. Now, we need to achieve the same level of confidence in our grades and associated continuing professional development (CPD) to ensure they are aligned with other chartered bodies for business-critical disciplines. 

In the same way that human resources has earned a seat at the boardroom table, so OSH needs to find its voice. If the membership grades review leads to changes that equip OSH professionals more comprehensively to enable strategic and operational success, it would be a step in the right direction

However, we are only at the start of this consultation, which runs until the end of March. The member survey closed at the end of October but there will be another online survey focused exclusively on the membership grades review in February. After the consultation and subject to approval of IOSH’s privy council, we would put any proposed changes to the vote at our annual general meeting in October 2020. 

If carried, we would then move to implement changes in 2021. In the meantime, we are working on Blueprint 2.0, which will launch next year with a new CPD scheme mapped to the competency framework and a career hub with a range of extra support.

We are working hard to enhance our offering to you as members and to the sector at large. The updated competency framework and membership grades review are a first step. Please be sure to engage with the consultation at some point in the process so your voice can be heard.

However, we are only at the start of this consultation, which runs until the end of March. The member survey closed at the end of October but there will be another online survey focused exclusively on the membership grades review in February. After the consultation and subject to approval of IOSH’s privy council, we would put any proposed changes to the vote at our annual general meeting in October 2020. 

If carried, we would then move to implement changes in 2021. In the meantime, we are working on Blueprint 2.0, which will launch next year with a new CPD scheme mapped to the competency framework and a career hub with a range of extra support.

We are working hard to enhance our offering to you as members and to the sector at large. The updated competency framework and membership grades review are a first step. Please be sure to engage with the consultation at some point in the process so your voice can be heard.

 

Type : 
Topic :  
Issue : 

Add new comment