The ILO (International Labour Organization) has designed the guidelines on occupational safety and health as a practical tool for assisting organizations and competent institutions for improvement in occupational safety and health (OSH) practices. These guidelines have been developed according to internationally agreed principles.


ILO (International Labour Organization)

ILO is a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN) dedicated to improving labour conditions and living standards throughout the industrial world.


OSH (Occupational Safety And Health)

At the onset of the twenty-first century, a heavy human and economic toll is still exacted by unsafe and unhealthy working conditions.

OHS is recognised as the discipline concerning with the prevention of work-related injuries and diseases as well as the well-being of the safety of workers. OHS also deals with the improvement of working conditions and workplace environment.


Significance Of ILO – OSH Guidelines

Boost in technology and cutthroat competitive pressures bring rapid change in working conditions, working practices and nature of organizations. Legislation is essential but insufficient on its own to handle these changes or to keep pace with new trend of hazards and risks. Organizations must also be able to tackle occupational safety and health challenges regularly and to response effectively into hard boiled management strategies. These Guidelines on occupational safety and health management systems provide a unique and powerful tool for the development of a strong safety culture within and beyond organizations. The Guidelines were prepared on the basis of a broad-based approach, involving the ILO and its tripartite constituents and other stakeholders. 



They have also been shaped by internationally agreed occupational safety and health principles as defined in relevant international labour standards. This tripartite approach provides the strength, flexibility and appropriate basis for the development of a sustainable safety culture in the organization.


Application Of ILO – OSH Guidelines

The practical recommendations of these guidelines are aimed for use by all those who have responsibility for occupational safety and health management. They are not legally binding and are not intended to replace national laws, regulations or accepted standards. Their application does not require certification

The Guidelines may be applied on two levels:

  1. National 2.Organizational

 At The National Level, they provide for the establishment of a national framework, preferably supported by national laws and regulations. They also provide precise information on developing voluntary arrangements to strengthen compliance with regulations and standards, which, in turn, lead to continual improvement of OSH performance.

At The Organizational Level, the Guidelines encourage the integration of OSH management system elements as an important component of overall policy and management arrangements. Employers, owners, staff, workers and their representatives are motivated in applying appropriate OSH management principles and practices to improve OSH performance.


Objectives Of ILO – OSH Guidelines

  • To protect workers from hazards and to the elimination of work-related injuries, ill health, diseases, incidents and deaths.
  • To establish a national framework for OSH management systems, preferably supported by national laws and regulations. 
  • To provide guidance for the development of voluntary arrangements to strengthen compliance with regulations and standards leading to l improvement in OSH performance. 
  • To provide guidance on the development of both national and tailored guidelines on OSH management systems for appropriate needs of organizations, related to their size and the nature of their activities. 
  • To provide guidance regarding the integration of OSH management system elements in the organization, particularly employers, owners, managerial staff, workers and their representatives to continually improve OSH performance.


The Key Elements Of ILO-OSH – Guidelines 

ILO Guidelines reflects ILO values on the promotion and maintenance of the highest degree of physical and mental health and social well-being of workers in all occupations. 

The main elements of The ILO Guidelines:

  1. Policy
  2. Organising
  3. Planning and implementation
  4. Evaluation 
  5. Auditing
  6. Actions for improvement. 

POLICY: The policy is the basis of the OSH management system.

 It sets out:

  • The health and safety aims and objectives of the organization,
  • Management commitment.
  • The elements of OSH policy and worker participation. 

The employer should produce a safety policy, if possible in consultation with the workforce.

 ORGANISING:  Organizing contributes to the creation of a positive culture.

It contains the elements:

  • Responsibility and accountability
  •  Competence, and training, 
  • Documentation and communication. 

It requires management structure to be in place and necessary responsibilities allocated for delivering the OSH policy. 

 PLANNING AND IMPLEMENTATION: Planning and implementation should aim to minimize the risks created by work activities, products, and services. 

They use risk assessment methods to identify hazards, decide priorities and set objectives for hazard elimination and risk reduction. 

Wherever possible, risks are eliminated by the careful selection and design of facilities, equipment, substances and processes or minimized by the use of physical control measures. Where this is not possible, provision of a safe system of work and personal protective equipment are used to control risks. 

EVALUATION:  Evaluation is a means of determining the extent to which health and safety policy and objectives are being implemented. 

It contains the elements:


  • Performance monitoring and measurement,
  •  Investigation of work-related injuries, ill health, diseases and incidents, 
  • Audit and management review, both reactive and proactive.
  • Analysing data gathered through monitoring is a means to check if safety performance is adequate.

 AUDITING: An audit is a systematic and critical examination of each stage of an organization’s management systems and procedures by a competent person or team who is independent of the process.

  Aim of Auditing is:

  • To establish whether or not systems exist and if so they are adequate and are used.
  • If the results of the audits identify that the control of hazards and risks is inadequate, the control measures should be modified accordingly and within a timescale. 

ACTIONS FOR IMPROVEMENT: OH&SMS must be adequate to the legal requirements, occupational health and safety hazards and business processes applied in the organization. ISO 45001 represents the best practices in establishing, implementing and maintaining the OH& SMS.

Action for improvement includes the elements:

  • Preventive and corrective action and continual improvement.
  • Emphasizes the need for continual improvement of OSH performance.
  • Represents a set of rules, policies, processes, plans and practices for preventing occupational health and safety hazards and minimizes risks in the workplace. 
  • Helps an organization to establish effective OH&SMS and to avoid missing important elements along this way. 

Along with the good public image, companies can save money through the implementation of an Occupational Health & Safety Management System. This can be achieved through reducing incidents resulting in injuries and being able to obtain insurance at a more reasonable cost.


ILO Conventions 

The ILO Conventions cover a wide area of social and labour issues including basic human rights, minimum wages, industrial relations, employment policy, social dialogue, social security and other issues.

From the foundation of ILO in 1919 up to 2018, the ILO had adopted 189 conventions.

 The first convention was adopted by ILO member states meeting in Geneva in 1999. It aims to protect children from the worst forms of child labour, which include slavery, prostitution, trafficking, deployment of children in armed conflict and other conditions that compromise their overall well-being.


The Eight Fundamental Conventions 

Workers and employers, without distinction whatsoever, shall have the right to establish and, subject only to the rules of the organization concerned, to join organizations of their own choosing without previous authorization.


 Workers’ and employers’ organizations shall enjoy adequate protection against any acts of interference by each other or each other’s agents or members in their establishment, functioning or administration.


Workers’ and employers’ organizations shall enjoy adequate protection against any acts of interference by each other or each other’s agents or members in their establishment, functioning or administration. 




 Each Member of the International Labour Organisation which ratifies this Convention undertakes to suppress and not to make use of any form of forced or compulsory labour–

(a) As a means of political coercion or education or as a punishment (b) as a method of mobilising and using labour for purposes of economic development;

(c) As a means of labour discipline;

(d) As a punishment for having participated in strikes;

      (e) As a means of racial, social, national or religious discrimination.


  1. Minimum Age Convention, 1973 (No. 138) 

Each Member for which this Convention is in force undertakes to pursue a national policy designed to ensure the effective abolition of child labour and to raise progressively the minimum age for admission to employment or work to a level consistent with the fullest physical and mental development of young persons.


  1. Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention, 1999 (No. 182) 

Each Member which ratifies this Convention shall take immediate and effective measures to secure the prohibition and elimination of the worst forms of child labour as a matter of urgency.

For the purposes of this Convention, the term child shall apply to all persons under the age of 18.



  1. Equal Remuneration Convention, 1951 (No. 100) 

 (a) The term remuneration includes the ordinary, basic or minimum wage or salary and any additional emoluments whatsoever payable directly or indirectly, whether in cash or in kind, by the employer to the worker and arising out of the worker’s employment;

(b) The term equal remuneration for men and women workers for work of equal value refers to rates of remuneration established without discrimination based on sex.


 For the purpose of this Convention the term discrimination includes—

Any distinction, exclusion or preference made on the basis of race, colour, sex, religion, political opinion, national extraction or social origin, which has the effect of nullifying or impairing equality of opportunity or treatment in employment or occupation.



ILO – OSH Guidelines reasserted the commitment of ILO′s Member States to respect, promote and universally fulfil the principles relating to four fundamental rights at work:

  • Freedom of association and effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining;
  • Elimination of all forms of forced or obligatory labour;
  • Effective abolition of child labour;
  • Elimination of discrimination in employment and occupation.


For the top-level Industrial safety courses, more advice or any personalized information get in touch with us 

At:, or visit our website or call us on +917569034271

Let’s connect together on FacebookYouTubeLinkedIn, Instagram.

Tag: Health & Safety


1 Comment

  • Im very happy to find this web site. I want to to thank you for ones time just for this fantastic read!! I definitely appreciated every part of it and i also have you saved as a favorite to see new information in your blog.

Comments are closed.

Price Based Country test mode enabled for testing South Africa. You should do tests on private browsing mode. Browse in private with Firefox, Chrome and Safari

Chat with us!
Scan the code
How can we help you?