Yesterday’s risk management practices are no longer adequate to deal with today’s threats and they need to evolve. This reasoning drove ISO to revise risk management standard 31000:2009 to 31000:2018.2 Per ISO, risk can be positive, negative or both, and can address, create or result in opportunities and threats. The key driver for effective risk management is to create and protect value.
ISO defines risk as the “effect of uncertainty on objectives.” Keeping workers healthy and safe is the most basic objective for every occupational health and safety pro. OHS’s foundational job safety analysis (JSA), which can be expanded into complex risk assessments, deals with basics of uncertainty: identify the hazard, the risk (severity and likeliness of occurring), and the controls to keep workers healthy and safe at each job step. JSAs drive nearly every OHS decision. Risk management, therefore, is the DNA of OHS.