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Managing safety competencies

Guidance to help companies manage the competence of their staff who are involved with electronic safety-related systems.

The Health and Safety Executive working in partnership with the IET and the BCS, has published guidance to help companies manage the competence of their staff who are involved with electronic safety-related systems (e.g. fly-by-wire in aircraft, railway signaling systems, shutdown systems in the petrochemical industry and offshore and safeguarding arrangements for machinery and industrial automation).

Such systems are increasingly important in modern society and the functionality and complexity are ever increasing. The potential safety and economic benefits such systems have are significant but it is vital that if the potential benefits are to be realised, those involved in any activity associated with such systems are adequately competent for the tasks they have to perform.

The new publication Managing Competence for Safety-related Systems provides the essential requirements for a successful competence management system (CMS) suitable for all staff at all levels of responsibility within organisations working on safety-related systems.    

Following the guidance will not only enable organisations to meet the legal requirements for competence within Great Britain, but it will also help them to develop and fully utilise the skills of their staff.  Efforts have been made to keep the guidance both brief (just 16 pages) and simple.

It is aimed at those who are responsible for managing and assuring the competence of individuals and teams that might have an impact on the functional safety of safety-related systems. 

  • The document identifies four phases for the planning and development of a competence management system, and for these four phases, 15 principles have been developed. 
  • To assist with the implementation of the guidance, detailed supplementary guidance material is provided as a separate and complementary electronic document.
  • The guidance took two years to develop and builds on the previous competency work of the IET, BCS and HSE.

Managing competence for safety related systems (Part 1) Managing competence for safety-related systems (Pt 1)

Managing competence for safety-related systems (Part 1 - key guidance)

Managing competence for safety related systems (Part 2) Managing competence for safety-related systems (Pt 2)

Managing competence for safety-related systems (Part 2 - supplementary material)

 

To tie in with the launch of the new guidance, the IET is making their industry leading publication “Competence Criteria for Safety-Related System Practitioners” available for internet download. Originally commissioned by the HSE jointly developed by the BCS and the Institution of Electrical Engineers (the precursor of the IET) and published in 1999 by the IEE, the new electronic version has been re-written to dovetail in with Managing Competence for Safety-related Systems.

Please note that the following document is not a free of charge download.

Competence Criteria for Safety-related System Practitioners Competence criteria for safety-related system practitioners

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