OHS training. Who must undergo OHS training and when?

The implementation of training in the field of occupational health and safety is an obligation faced by every entrepreneur, even when they employ only one employee. However, regulations in this field change over time, so it is worth keeping up to date with the most current regulations that dictate the employer's obligation on how often they must provide their employees with such training.

OHS in small companies

Sole proprietors do not really have to deal with the fulfillment of general health and safety guidelines, even when a spouse or a next of kin helps them in business. The situation changes when an entrepreneur decides to employ an employee on the basis of an employment contract. Then the company falls under health and safety regulations.

Obligations of the employer

Before an employee starts working for an enterprise, they must undergo the so-called "introductory training," which informs them about the hazards and procedures associated with a specific position. Later on, supplementary training is obligatory, which is aimed at consolidating knowledge in this area, as well as sensitizing employees to possible changes. Periodic health and safety training depends primarily on the position held in the company, as well as the category of danger assigned to a specific activity.

Periodic training must be held at least:

  • Once a year – for people occupying blue-collar positions characterized by an increased type of accident risk,
  • Once every three years – for employees in ordinary blue-collar positions,
  • Once every five years – for managers, foremen, technologists, engineers, constructors of machines and technical devices, health and safety employees, people exposed to health hazards resulting from their activities,
  • Once every six years for employees in administrative and office positions,

Periodic training does not have to apply to office administration employees if their activity is not higher than the third risk group.

Health and Safety Service

As of January 1, 2019, regulations also indicate some changes in the creation of the OHS service, whose purpose is to provide advice and control in the area of occupational health and safety. For years, such an obligation has been imposed on entrepreneurs employing more than 100 employees. If a company employs up to 10 employees, the owner may conduct health and safety training themselves. Similarly, if a company employs up to 20 people, but in this case only on the condition that the activity is not higher than the third risk category, then it must be outsourced to an external company conducting OHS training.

It is worth thinking about health and safety training not as a necessity, but as an obligation resulting from the responsibility of the employers to employees. The more reliable and responsible the approach, the greater the safety for the employees.