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Why do Health and Safety Training Standards Need Maintaining?


A smiling worker with a high level of training

Health and safety education is slightly different to the subject matter taught in other training courses. Many courses will aim to improve the performance of employees, meaning that the worst that can happen is that they will stay at their current level if they learn nothing on the course. Whilst they may not be as productive and effective as their manager would like, the business should be able to muddle on with no particular harm.

When it comes to health and safety training however, having a workforce which does not have a suitable level of knowledge can result in illness, injury and death to employees and members of the public in the worst-case scenario, as well as low morale and stunted productivity levels.

With such serious consequences being an eminently possible reality, it is essential that not only do company employees receive health and safety training in the first instance, but that this training is of a suitably high standard. Being taught incorrect or incomplete information can be just as potentially harmful as not having any knowledge at all about issues such as hazardous substances or dangerous machinery.

Accredited Courses for Ensuring Standards

As such, the standards of health and safety training are taken extremely seriously. One of the primary examples of this comes in the form of accredited health and safety courses. Awarding bodies and accrediting institutions such as NEBOSH, IOSH and CITB for instance will only allow health and safety course providers who have been pre-approved by them to offer their respective courses.

Not only do they need to be pre-approved, but they are continually assessed to ensure that their teaching standards are maintained at the high level expected and demanded by the awarding body. Any provider which falls short of these minimum requirements can end up having their accreditation and ability to offer those courses taken away.

This also means that anyone who passes the assessments and achieves the accredited certificate from these bodies has an achievement which is highly regarded and well-respected by both current and potential employers alike. Because the standard of the training and the integrity of the assessments are underpinned by the inspections and scrutiny of the awarding bodies, it means that employers can feel comfortable in the knowledge that a person who comes to them with such an achievement has acquired something worthwhile. See the section below on "Accredited Courses Command Respect from Employers" for more information on this point.

The Number of Providers can Reduce Overall Levels of Standards and Quality

There are, surprisingly, very few barriers to entry when it comes to becoming a health and safety trainer or providing health and safety training services. In fact, the economic downturn of 2009 and afterwards led to many health and safety practitioners who were let go from their employment setting up their own sole practitioner health and safety businesses. Whilst some will have a high level of knowledge and have the necessary skills to be able to teach it sufficiently to others, there is no real way of knowing what their level of knowledge and teaching ability is until you have already parted with your money and sat through the training.

It is for this reason that accredited health and safety training courses are particularly sought after. Not only do NEBOSH General Certificate courses for instance provide a tremendous amount of vital health and safety information to those delegates attending, but you can feel safe in the knowledge that the provider has been vetted and approved by NEBOSH; in this case to be allowed to teach this NEBOSH course to a high standard.

Accredited Courses Command Respect from Employers

Just as accredited health and safety courses and qualifications are popular amongst existing managers because they can be satisfied that they will be spending their money on high quality safety training, so too are they popular with prospective employers for those individuals who are currently out of work or are thinking about moving jobs. Because the accredited courses and qualifications have exams and assessments at the conclusion which need to be passed before the certificate is issued, prospective employers can be assured that those applicants who genuinely hold the certificate will not only have received high quality training, but that they have retained enough knowledge and information to pass the exams (and can demonstrate enough practical application too for qualifications like the NEBOSH General Certificate which have a practical project element as well as examinations). This knowledge and information gained from the course can then be applied to the workplace to make it safer and reduce the potential for accidents to occur.

Certain accredited qualifications are held in such high regard by many employers that quite often they are stated as a requirement for a health and safety job role. As employers know that a person who has achieved it will have been taught information to a certain level, and retained enough of it to pass the exams and/or assessments, they will already know that the person has a suitable level of knowledge required for the position. Without going into too many specifics in a job requirements section of a job posting, they know that anyone who holds that qualification is likely to have the level of health and safety knowledge required, and can be confident that they will be, at the very least, a person worthy of allocating time from their busy schedule to interview for the vacant position.


Health and safety standards therefore need maintaining in order to preserve the quality of the teaching, and to ensure that those who do successfully put in the hard work of study and revision needed to pass the relevant assessments obtain the prestige and rewards they deserve. Having health and safety qualifications which are easy to acquire would diminish their value, just as receiving low quality or incomplete health and safety training can prove ineffective and perhaps downright dangerous. Therefore it is in everyone's interest to maintain high standards of health and safety training in the industry.

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Please see below for the current featured online course from our range of 85 online video courses (click here to view all titles).

Noise Awareness

Noise Awareness Online Training Course

The Noise Awareness online course will highlight just how dangerous noise can be in the workplace, and the main noise safety issues you should be aware of.

It will take you through some of the simple science, the main legislation that applies, and introduce you to noise level limits.

The course also covers some of the specific health risks caused by noise and how to avoid them by producing risk assessments, action plans, and through the provision of appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).

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