IOSH Membership and its Levels: A Beginner's Guide
Health and safety are two factors that have always taken precedence over others, especially in workplaces. The Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) is an internationally renowned organisation that aims to sustain a secure and healthy work environment. The credibility of the body has remained intact since its conception in 1945, and it is now the world’s largest health and safety membership body.
According to the United Nations (UN) Global Impact, around 65% of global work-based mortality has been estimated to occur in Asia, while Europe showcases about 11.7%. This highlights the need for implementing safe practices in workplaces and seeking organisations like IOSH to improve the situation of occupational health and safety.
To become a member, you must meet the IOSH criteria and pass their assessment. In this blog, you will learn more about IOSH, the steps to gain an IOSH Membership, and its different membership levels.
Table of Contents
1) Introduction to IOSH
2) IOSH: Membership levels
3) How to acquire an IOSH Membership?
4) Benefits of an IOSH Membership
Introduction to IOSH
The IOSH is a non-profit organisation based in the United Kingdom (UK) that works to maintain safe and secure practices in work environments. It is the world’s largest health and safety organisation, with more than 44,000 members spread across 99 countries.
IOSH was founded in 1945 and has since grown into the successful organisation it is today. Although the organisation was initially called the ‘Institution of Industrial Safety Officers’, it was renamed the ‘Institution of Occupational Safety and Health’ in 1981.
It is a globally acknowledged organisation that provides training courses on the topics of occupational health and safety. IOSH is considered a benchmark in this sector, as it is known to produce the world’s best health and safety professionals. An IOSH Membership is a testament to the determination and excellence portrayed by individuals in improving occupational health and safety around the globe.
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IOSH Membership Levels
Unlike most organisations, IOSH provides seven membership levels that reflect the qualifications of safety professionals and their experience in the industry. The seven IOSH Membership Levels are as follows:
The student membership can be availed by students pursuing a career in work-related safety and health. It provides a multitude of benefits, such as useful resources and tools that can be used for studies and to improve employment opportunities.
One of the most significant advantages of student membership is the opportunity to interact with mentors and experienced Health and Safety specialists. The student membership can be accessed with a one-time payment of £15, which remains valid until the end of your studies.
Since the student membership is only open to students, the affiliate membership is considered the first IOSH Membership level that people access. Gaining a membership at this level makes it easier for you to move to other levels based on your level of knowledge and experience.
Anybody pursuing a career in the health and safety sector is free to avail this membership. Even individuals who show an interest in improving the safety and health in workplaces can access it.
The affiliate membership in IOSH also provides access to the world’s best Health and Safety specialists who can help you advance in your career. You can also access training courses and study materials to learn more about the industry.
Associate membership (AIOSH)
The qualification for attaining an associate membership is to acquire an IOSH-accredited certification. The certification is proof that you have an in-depth understanding of the fundamental concepts of safety and health in the workplace. NEBOSH certifications are one of the accepted qualifications, along with NVQ Level 6 training courses.
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Technical membership (Tech IOSH)
The criterion to become a technical member of IOSH is to be a qualified and experienced practitioner as this level demands the level of expertise exhibited by people in operational health and safety job posts.
A Level 3 qualification is the biggest requirement for attaining membership. Additionally, you are required to have a minimum of two years of work experience or five years of part-time experience.
If you wish to maintain your IOSH technical membership, then you must join the Continuing Professional Development (CPD) program. It is also important to keep a CPD record to provide as proof.
Graduate membership (Grad IOSH)
A degree-level qualification is the basic requirement for attaining an IOSH graduate membership. Apart from this, signing up for the Initial Professional Development (IPD) program is also a method for obtaining it. You will be required to maintain a CPD record here as well.
One of the most interesting facts about graduate members is that they are constantly trying to achieve Chartered status. In fact, most of the graduate members have succeeded in doing so within a span of five years after entering the category.
Chartered membership (CMIOSH)
The IOSH is the only organisation in the world that can confer the status of a Chartered Safety and Health Practitioner. To obtain Chartered membership, individuals must complete a rigorous assessment, produce a portfolio, pass a peer interview, and complete the IPD program.
IOSH Chartered membership is highly esteemed and signifies a profound comprehension of the field. To maintain Chartered membership, members must pay an annual fee of £176.
Chartered Fellow (CFIOSH)
Being a Chartered Fellow is the highest level of membership in IOSH. The major requirements for becoming one is a minimum of five years as a Chartered member, a portfolio, and an interview.
The status of Chartered Fellow isn’t easily attainable as those who bear it are some of the best Health and Safety professionals in the world. The Chartered fellow membership in IOSH can be renewed with an annual fee of £193.
How to Acquire an IOSH Membership
Attaining membership in IOSH consists of a few simple steps. If you are a student pursuing a health-and-safety-related career, the only requirement to join the student membership is a single payment of £15. This also applies if you are a Safety, Health, and Environment (SHE) Technician Apprentice.
If you are not a student, then the next membership level that can be accessed is the affiliate membership. An annual fee of £198 is enough to acquire an IOSH affiliate membership, after which you can attain different levels of membership based on your experience and qualifications.
Your membership can be renewed with an additional annual pay following the one-time membership fee of £198. The amount of the additional pay will vary based on your current membership level.
Benefits of an IOSH Membership
An IOSH Membership is acknowledged and accepted all around the globe and there are numerous benefits that come with it. Let’s look at some of the benefits of attaining membership in IOSHI
a) Credibility: An IOSH Membership is the golden standard of occupational health and safety. IOSH is the world’s biggest health and safety professional membership organisation and the only one that provides a Chartered membership to health and safety professionals.
b) Better job prospects: Your membership level is proof of your proficiency in the topics of safety and health in the workplace. Your progression to higher membership levels can pave the way for better employment opportunities.
c) Build more connections: An organisation with members in the thousands is a great place to network and build new connections. You can meet like-minded individuals and experts in the field, both of which can help you progress in your career. Networking also enables you to stay up-to-date on the latest industry advancements and policy changes.
An IOSH Membership is useful for practitioners in the occupational health and safety sector. We hope this blog has helped you learn more about IOSH, its benefits, the different membership levels, and steps to become a member.
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