Risk assessments are an integral part of any business and are an effective way of preventing risk and injury in the workplace and minimising potential hazards.
You may have come across the term ‘dynamic risk assessment’ - but what exactly is a dynamic risk assessment? How are dynamic risk assessments completed?
Read on to learn all about risk assessments and dynamic risk assessments, including what they are, when they’re needed, and how they are completed.
Dynamic Risk Assessment vs Risk Assessment
Risk assessments are one of the key ways of identifying any workplace hazards and can give you an insight as to what hazards would be likely to cause harm to employees, visitors, or customers.
A risk assessment is a legal requirement for any employer - and it’s a legal requirement to record the findings of risk assessments if you have five or more employees. This is so the results can be used in the future, and so the results can be consulted if an incident occurs.
Regular risk assessments are a necessity for any business, regardless of whether it’s an office space or it’s a construction site. When conducting a risk assessment, it’s important to include all aspects of the workspace. This may include identifying potential hazards (e.g COVID-19, stress, slips, trips and falls), as well as other organisational factors (e.g shift patterns, cleaning with chemicals, etc).
Once you’ve identified the risks, you should evaluate the findings and consider what controls you can put in place.
It is the employer’s responsibility to complete a risk assessment - and if you’re an employer, it is you who will be accountable for any incidents. Conducting regular risk assessments is key to protecting yourself and your employees. The results of risk assessments should be available for any employee to view - for example, on a work notice board.
A dynamic risk assessment differs slightly from a regular risk assessment, as they are conducted in real-time. Dynamic risk assessments involve identifying, measuring, and then evaluating the risks while working, essentially adding to existing risk assessment results.
Dynamic risk assessments are a great way of encouraging employees to remain aware while working and be able to identify any potential risks in the field. This also encourages employees to respond to risk on the go in an appropriate and effective manner, and prevent risks from developing.
Employees and workers can use a dynamic risk assessment to determine how certain tasks should be approached - whether they should be approached with caution or avoided altogether. It’s a great way of ensuring that all tasks are conducted safely and effectively, minimising the overall risk.
How To Complete a Dynamic Risk Assessment
All employees and workers should be encouraged to complete dynamic risk assessments on a regular basis while completing tasks at work. Dynamic risk assessments are on-the-spot risk assessments that can be an effective response against developing risks.
Just like any risk assessment, the first step of a dynamic risk assessment is to identify the risk, acknowledging the source of the risk. This can prevent risks from escalating and minimises the chances of others being affected. This usually also involves determining how large the risk is and who else may be affected by it.
The next step of a dynamic risk assessment is to minimise and mitigate the risk. This involves determining whether it is safe to continue with the task, or whether immediate action is warranted. During this stage of a dynamic risk assessment, you should take the necessary steps to make the task safe, or decide to stop the task.
If risks have been found during a dynamic risk assessment, try to minimise the risk in a safe and effective manner. This may involve consulting with other staff members, using extra equipment, or delaying certain tasks until it is safe to continue.
It’s not necessary to record dynamic risk assessments that are conducted by employees - however, the findings should be communicated with other members of staff or managers where appropriate.
At Beaconrisk, we include access to a risk assessments portal as part of our health and safety advice package. We also offer training to ensure that you know how to conduct dynamic risk assessments effectively.