Membership of IOSH (The Institution of Occupational Safety and Health) can open a lot of doors to your career development while enhancing your skills and allowing you to directly impact health and safety policy in your work place
Joining an organisation isn’t always an easy decision however with an IOSH membership you can get your career in health and safety started and work towards your long term goals.
IOSH is the world’s largest professional health and safety membership organisation. IOSH are the voice of the professions, campaigning on issues that affect millions of working people.
With more than 42,000 members in 85 countries, IOSH are the biggest professional body for health and safety in the world. IOSH operates in organisations in every sector of the economy advising directors and managers on protecting millions of working people.
Why Join IOSH?
Becoming a member of IOSH will propel you to the forefront of the health and safety industry.
Some of the benefits of joining include being able to attend the 300 conferences, webinars and seminars that are held annually, a subscription to the IOSH magazine that offers regulatory updates and health and safety commentary in addition to becoming involved with consultations to influence policy and expand your skills with their CPD programme. This list isn’t exhaustive and a membership with IOSH offers a lot more beyond making connections and linking in with other health and safety professionals.
How Do I Become An IOSH Member?
You don’t necessarily need to have a long history of health and safety experience to become an IOSH member.
With a NVQ 3 you can join initially as an affiliate member and then move onto associate membership and enjoy the benefits that come with membership to IOSH in addition to taking the first step to becoming a fully-fledged and practicing health and safety professional. IOSH has different levels of membership that can influence your future career and job prospects.
The Different Levels Of IOSH Membership
There are currently 6 levels of IOSH membership that depend on your qualifications, skills and experience.
Everyone starts at this level and it is the first stage of IOSH membership while your skills and experience are assessed. Associate Member (AIOSH)
Associate membership can be achieved by holding a level 3 accredited qualification such as NEBOSH and no practical health and safety experience is required at this level. Relevant qualifications include a Level 4 European Qualification Framework (EQF), NQF/QCF Level 3 Certificate (BSC), NVQ Level 3 Certificate, SCQF Level 6, NEBOSH Certification or a TUC Diploma.
Technical Member (TechIOSH)
To achieve this category of health and safety membership you need to have both work experience of either two years’ full time or 5 years’ part time which can be gained either through voluntary, part-time or full-time work in addition to an accredited qualification. This list of qualifications is the same as an Associate Member and an ongoing CPD record is mandatory.
Graduate Member (GradIOSH)
You don’t need to have any practical experience as a Graduate member as long as you hold either a cognate degree or any of the following qualifications: Level 6 European Qualification Framework (EQF), NQF/QCF Level 6 Diploma (BSC), NVQ Level 6 Diploma or a SCQF Level 10 Diploma. Graduate members are enrolled in the Initial Professional Development (IPD) scheme which can be completed in 2 to 5 years and it offers the only route into Chartered Membership. It also involved an obligatory programme of Continuing Professional Development (CPD).
Chartered Member (CMIOSH)
To progress from a Graduate Member of IOSH onto Chartered Membership you need to complete the Initial Professional Development (IPD) scheme as well a professional peer interview and open assessment. At this level you considered amongst the highest standards in the industry and you will get help to directly influence policy and further enhance your career prospects. You also need to keep an obligatory CPD record too.
Chartered Fellow (CFIOSH)
This is the highest level of IOSH membership and it involves holding 5 years’ experience as a Chartered Member as well as a peer interview and relevant skills portfolio. You will also need to maintain a regular CPD record.
Joining a Branch or Group
Finally, a major benefit of IOSH membership is the ability to join a branch or a group.
When you join IOSH you can choose which branch to become a member of and this can be one that is located in your area. Many members use this to make local contacts and to keep up to date with relevant health and safety news where they live. Joining a group allows you to network with other industry specific members across the country and be involved in consultations that shape policy and regulations in your sector.
Taking The First Step In Your Health and Safety Career
IOSH offers a range of benefits and opportunities for anyone interested in kick-starting a career in health and safety or moving their way up the career ladder.
With their support and through a regimented structure of training, development and qualifications you can work your way up and gain the experience necessary to become an expert in your field.