Influence health and safety duty holders and others for the purposes of work-related health and safety regulation

Business Sectors (Suites): Health and Safety
Developed by: Improve
Approved on: 01 Jan 2019


This standard covers the skills and knowledge required to identify and maintain effective contact and communication with duty holders and employee or safety representatives for the purposes of health and safety regulation. This involves questioning, persuading, negotiating with and gaining the commitment of duty holders for the purposes of health and safety regulation and exercising a strategic influence on the health and safety policies and resources of organisations for the purposes of better regulation.

It covers

  1. influencing how senior managers set up and use health and safety management structures and systems and associated resource allocation
  2. influencing health and safety policies and procedures within organisations
  3. identifying and establishing contact with the right people at the right time and in the right way, including directors, managers, employee representatives, employees or contractors
  4. gaining access to or negotiating with employers who are uncooperative, aggressive, bullying or actively seeking to avoid contact with the regulator
  5. seeking out and obtaining information from witnesses, employee or safety representatives, directors, managers, employees and others to identify the circumstances of incidents or complaints, the nature of risk control measures, how effective those measures are and improvements that are needed
  6. persuading those in control and others of the need to make changes to improve health and safety performance
  7. negotiating action plans and timetables for improved health and safety performance and gaining commitment to the plans and timetables from directors and senior managers
  8. communicating unwelcome messages
  9. interviewing injured, distressed or traumatised witnesses and discussing incidents and enforcement proposals with the bereaved

Performance criteria

You must be able to:

  1. manage contacts with the organisation's representatives so the regulator is in control of the intervention and it runs according to plans
  2. identify which people you need to communicate with and the information you need to obtain or deliver following standard operating procedures
  3. gain entry to the relevant worksite or activities and contact appropriate organisational representatives following standard operating procedures
  4. make the purpose of activity clear to organisational representatives in a manner likely to gain their co- operation
  5. provide information and professional opinion without compromising future actions of the regulatory authority
  6. communicate in a way people understand what is required of them
  7. listen to what people say and ask further questions for clarification following standard operating procedures
  8. take effective action following regulatory authority's safety policy in the event of non- cooperation and consider alternative courses of action
  9. deal sensitively with people who are injured, upset or shocked, whilst ensuring that you get accurate and clear information from them
  10. identify the best way of influencing appropriate individuals within an organisation to take action to change and improve
  11. identify positive aspects of performance on which further change and development can be built
  12. identify obstacles to change and seek ways to overcome them following standard operating procedures
  13. communicate clearly to both duty holders and safety or employee representatives why changes in health, safety or welfare standards, procedures, policies or management arrangements are necessary and changes needed
  14. communicate persuasively at the right level with the right people to gain support within the organisation for change and improvement
  15. negotiate and agree action plans and priorities following standard operating procedures
  16. agree timetables for introducing and monitoring changes and improvements following standard operating procedures
  17. identify when it is appropriate to communicate in writing with duty holders, employee representatives, safety representatives and others following standard operating procedures
  18. prepare any written communications promptly following regulatory intervention and explain to duty holders what formal enforcement action you have taken
  19. respond promptly to requests for written information, advice and disclosure of information following applicable legislation and regulatory authority's policies and procedures
  20. obtain internal authority for both the type of communication and its content following standard operating procedures
  21. use words and phrases which can be understood by the recipient, and explain any with which they are not likely to be familiar following standard operating procedures
  22. consider the needs of third parties for personal or commercial confidentiality following standard operating procedures
  23. check content of communication is technically correct following standard operating procedures
  24. communicate to relevant people their rights and responsibilities following standard operating procedures
  25. communicate to aggrieved people action proposed and why you have decided not to take actions they were seeking from you following standard operating procedures
  26. report on activities to colleagues using the appropriate method and house style
  27. identify and share information informally with colleagues of health and safety matters which may be of interest to them following standard operating procedures
  28. identify areas for action by the regulatory authority and communicate these using relevant channels to inform policy and practice
  29. prepare formal reports which include all relevant data and analysis to support recommendations and conclusions
  30. record sufficiently what has been said and done following standard operating procedures
  31. record activities on the regulator's database within appropriate timescales

Knowledge and Understanding

You need to know and understand:

  1. how to conduct inspections, investigations and other regulatory activities
  2. how to operate within the roles and responsibilities of others in the organisation
  3. how to identify the regulatory authority's current policies and procedures and how to influence them
  4. how to ensure your own health and safety at work
  5. ways of applying knowledge of hazards, risks, options for improved health and safety performance and the likely impact of these on duty holders, their employees, complainants, injured, bereaved or others
  6. how to make best use of benchmarks from other similar establishments
  7. how to apply the regulatory authority's enforcement policies and priorities
  8. how to identify and make use of sources of further information or support
  9. ways of identifying, gathering and assessing sufficient, valid and reliable information
  10. how to make use of an appropriate range of persuasion techniques
  11. how to apply a range of negotiating techniques
  12. ways of gaining commitment
  13. how different types of organisations work and how to influence them
  14. how to communicate effectively with, and influence, a wide range of people and maintain authoritative but amicable relationships
  15. how to recognise and defuse conflict before it arises
  16. how to manage aggressive or obstructive people and apply the regulatory authority's policy on dealing with aggression
  17. how you could provide information or opinions in a way which could compromise the future action of the regulatory authority and how correspondence could compromise the regulatory authority
  18. how to identify the types of employee representatives and safety representatives, their roles, and the information given to them
  19. how to apply house style and the content required in formal and informal communication and reports
  20. regulatory authority's performance and service standards for timeliness, content and quality of correspondence
  21. how to identify technical issues relevant to correspondence
  22. how to follow the regulatory authority's instructions on handling correspondence with elected members and other similar official correspondence
  23. how to identify types of duty holders and their responsibilities, including owners, users of the premises/activities/site, directors, managers, employees, contractors, manufacturers and suppliers of equipment or substances for use at work
  24. how to identify and use the statutory powers of regulators
  25. how to establish and apply relevant health, safety and welfare legislation
  26. how to apply rules of evidence
  27. how to select and apply the legislation applicable to, and rules on, disclosure of information and open government


Scope Performance

Scope Knowledge





Links To Other NOS

External Links

Version Number


Indicative Review Date

01 Jan 2023





Originating Organisation


Original URN


Relevant Occupations

Health and Safety Managers, Health and Safety Officers, Occupational Health Workers, Occupational Hygienists and Safety Officers (health and safety)

SOC Code



Occupational health and safety; health and safety; duty holders; influence