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A systematic examination against defined criteria to determine whether activities and related results conform to planned arrangements and whether these arrangements are implemented effectively and are suitable to achieve the organisation's policy and objectives.

Competent person

A person who has acquired, through training, qualification, or experience, or a combination of these, the knowledge and skills, including Workplace Health and Safety knowledge and skills, qualifying that person to perform the task required by a policy, procedure or standard.

Continual improvement

Process of enhancing the Workplace Health and Safety Management System, to achieve improvements in overall Workplace Health and Safety performances, in line with the organisation's Workplace Health and Safety policy.

NOTE:  The process need not take place in all areas of activity simultaneously.

Control of hazards/risks

At USQ the term ‘control of risks' is used, to mean the process of elimination or minimisation of risks.


A source or a situation with a potential for harm in terms of human injury or ill-health, damage to property, damage to the environment, or a combination of these.

Hazard identification

The process of recognising that a hazard exists and defining its characteristics.

Hazard/risk assessment

At USQ, the term ‘risk assessment' is used to mean the overall process of estimating the magnitude of risk and deciding what actions will be taken.

Health surveillance

Monitoring of individuals for the purpose of identifying changes in health status that may be due to occupational exposure to a hazard.


Any unplanned event resulting in, or having a potential for injury, ill health, damage or other loss.

Interested parties

Individuals or group concerned with, or affected by the Workplace Health and Safety performance of an organisation.

Workplace Health and Safety Management System (WHSMS)

That part of the overall management system which includes organisational structure, planning activities, responsibilities, practices, procedures, processes and resources for developing, implementing, achieving, reviewing and maintaining the Workplace Health and Safety policy, and so managing the risks associated with the business of the organisation.

Workplace health and safety objectives

Overall WHS goal in terms of Workplace Health and Safety performance, arising from the workplace health and safety policy that an organisation sets itself to achieve, and which are quantified where practicable.

Workplace health and safety performance

The measurable results of the Workplace Health and Safety Management System, related to the organization's control of health and safety risks, based on its Workplace Health and Safety policy, objectives and targets. Performance measurement includes measurement of Workplace Health and Safety management activities and results.

Workplace health and safety policy

Statement by the organization of its commitment, intentions and principles in relation to its overall workplace health and safety performance which provides a framework for action and for the setting of its Workplace health and safety objectives and targets.

Workplace health and safety professional

A person with expertise and qualifications in the identification, assessment, evaluation or control of occupational hazards and risks, and hazards associated with occupational ill-health.

Workplace health and safety target

A detailed performance requirement, quantified wherever practicable and pertaining to the organisation, that arises from the health and safety objectives, and that needs to be met in order to achieve those objectives.


A company, corporation, firm, enterprise or institution, or other legal entity or part thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, that has its own function(s) and administration.


(In relation to any potential injury or harm.) The likelihood and consequence of that injury or harm occurring.

NOTE:  Wherever the term ‘risk' occurs in this Safety Management System this should be taken to mean ‘occupational health and safety risk'.


A state in which the risk of harm (to persons) or damage is limited to an acceptable level.