Health & Safety Advisor

As a Health & Safety Advisor you have overall responsibility for promoting and ensuring the safety of people in the workplace. This involves creating, implementing, and updating health and safety policies and practices, ensuring your organisation and workers comply with safety legislation, investigating safety incidents, conducting risk assessments, providing employee training, and promoting a positive health and safety culture.

You will plan, implement, monitor, and review protective and safety measures and ensure the workforce have the knowledge, skills, and qualifications to follow health and safety procedures. You will confidently deal with people at all levels within the organisation and have the people management skills to provide constructive feedback, guidance and advice on health and safety compliance.

Role Description

Main duties and responsibilities

Health and safety advisors ensure that the organisation is managing health and safety practices and procedures that comply with safety legislation. You will have expert knowledge about current legislation the know-how to ensure that health and safety standards and systems are upheld and maintained. Your main responsibilities include:

  • Develop policies and safe operational procedures designed to keep people safe at work.
  • Carry out risk assessments and site inspections to check policies and procedures are bing properly followed.
  • Monitor and review site equipment to ensure is installed correctly and is safe.
  • Investigate and report accidents.
  • Provide health and safety guidance to management and workers.
  • Investigate health related complaints and cases of ill health.
  • Identify potential hazards in the workplace and determine ways to reduce risk.
  • Manage and organise the safe disposal of hazardous substances.
  • Develop KPI reports and maintain incident and accident records and statistics. Provide regular management reports, newsletters, and bulletins with recommendations for improvement.
  • Organise and run health and safety meetings and lead in-house training courses about health and safety issues and risks.
  • Provide specialist advice including fire regulations, hazardous substances, safeguarding machinery and occupational diseases.
  • Liaise with external health and safety authorities.
  • Maintain a good understanding of current and upcoming Health and Safety Executive (HSE)legislation and compliance requirements.
  • Attend Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH)seminars and read professional journals.

Skills and experience

As a Health and Safety Advisor you will have a natural air of authority. You will have excellent communication skills and the ability to ensure people fully understand their role and responsibilities in relation to health and safety. In addition, you will:

  • Have strong analytical and problem-solving skills with a naturally enquiring and investigative mind.
  • Good interpersonal skills and ability to work with calmly, patiently, and assertively with people at all levels within the organisation.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Ability to confidently present to groups explaining often complex analysis and information clearly and accurately.
  • Good negotiating skills to convince managers and workers of the need to implement and maintain safety procedures and standards.
  • Build a collaborative approach with colleagues.
  • Good IT skills, attention to detail and presentation skills.

Qualifications Required

To become a health and Safety Advisor you will need a Health and Safety related degree, or a qualification approved by the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH).  Some Health & Safety Advisors enter the profession by undertaking a Level 3 Apprenticeship in Safety, Health, and Environment (SHE).

If you want to be sure this is the right career for you, you can complete an introductory course to begin with, such as IOSH Managing Safely or the NEBOSH Health and Safety at Work Qualification.

Did you know?

Since 2005, the number of incidents has dropped by 82% and the industry performs consistently better than the ‘food and drinks manufacturing’ rate. Together with its members, the SWA strives to improve its performance.

The Association coordinates the development of high-quality and industry-specific guidance for distillers. It has also recently refreshed its library of H&S interactive training awareness modules. There are 7 modules, each of which focuses on a specific H&S topic and outlines their importance within the Scotch Whisky workplace.


There are several accredited qualifications in Health & Safety available, many with no minimum academic entry requirements, including:

The Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH), the Chartered body for occupational safety and health professionals, has a list of accredited qualifications delivered by universities and awarding bodies.Search for postgraduate courses in health and safety management.

Related Case Studies

The Scotch Whisky Association

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Quartermile Two, 2 Lister Square, Edinburgh EH3 9GL
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