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The Competent Person

Under The Management of Health & Safety at Work Regulations 1999, employers are required to appoint at least one ‘Competent Person' who is responsible for providing health and safety advice, assistance and guidance.

This person would preferably come from within the employer's organisation. However, the role does require a certain degree of expertise and, where this cannot be met internally, you are permitted to appoint an external professional to undertake the responsibilities.
 
 
 
 
 
  
The Meaning of ‘Competence'

Competence is not just the possession of professional qualifications, but also sufficient and relevant experience. Regulation 7(5) of the Management Regulations states, "A person shall be regarded as competent where he has sufficient training and experience and knowledge and other qualities to enable him properly to assist".

This statement prompts numerous questions. For example, what is ‘sufficient training'? How much and what type of experience is sufficient? What are ‘other qualities'? The Approved Code of Practice and Guidance makes it clear that for simple situations, an understanding of the relevant current best practice, and an awareness of the limitations of one's own experience, may be sufficient.

However, where situations are more complex, a higher level of knowledge and experience may be required. In such cases, an employer must be satisfied that the person appointed, whether internally or externally, possesses sufficient competence.
 
  
Working with PMR Solutions

At PMR Solutions we are able to provide the varying levels of competence required by employers across a range of sectors and risk levels.

We work closely alongside employers, taking responsibility at whatever level is required and allowing them to manage an appropriate level of health and safety in-house. Should you already have a certain level of competency within your organisation and simply require a boost, we can work on a supplemental basis to bring you up to where you need to be.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Did you know?

When seeking help in managing health and safety, the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) states that you should give preference to those within your own organisation that have the appropriate level of competence, and this can include you yourself as the employer. If you feel that the level of competence required does not exist within the company, then you can seek assistance from outside.

How can we help you?

To learn more about how PMR Solutions can assist you in managing your health and safety by acting as your organisations' ‘competent person', please get in touch.