What is the IOSH Managing Safely Course?

General Safety By Rhiannon Davies

A man in a suit stands in front of a flipchart and appears to be gesturing as he gives a presentation. He is surrounded by six smartly-dressed people who are sat at a table listening to him, with laptops, papers, and coffee cups in front of them.

IOSH Managing Safely ® is a three-day course designed to introduce managers and supervisors to a number of aspects of managing health and safety.

What Does the Acronym IOSH Mean?

IOSH stands for the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health. IOSH are a UK-based Chartered body for health and safety professionals. In addition to advising government bodies and policy makers, advocating for change in the industry, and commissioning research, they also offer a range of awareness level health and safety qualifications.


IOSH Managing Safely Overview

Is IOSH a Professional Qualification?

IOSH qualifications are widely recognised in the health and safety industry and are a good way to demonstrate that you have an awareness of health and safety issues. You are able to apply for an Affiliate IOSH membership with IOSH qualifications, however a higher level qualification is needed for Associate Membership and beyond.


Who is the Course for?

The IOSH Managing Safely course is aimed at anyone in a management, supervisory, or team leadership role, no matter what the sector or industry they work in. It’s designed for anyone who needs a broad knowledge of common health and safety risks in order to help keep their team working safely.


Is It Mandatory?

IOSH Managing Safely is not a mandatory qualification in the legal sense, however HSE legislation does make sufficient health and safety a legal requirement in the workplace – studying the IOSH Managing Safely qualification is a great first step towards making sure your workplace is compliant with this.


What Level is the Course?

The IOSH Managing Safely course is a level 2 qualification, equivalent to a GCSE in England and Wales.


Is IOSH Managing Safely Difficult?

The Managing Safely course is designed for anyone to be able to study it without any prior knowledge of health and safety issues. It’s an entry-level course that can be used a stepping stone to more advanced qualifications if desired.

The course is assessed with a multiple-choice assessment at the end of the day and a practical risk assessment to be carried out in your own workplace. You’ll also do a few practice mock assessments throughout the course to get an idea of what the final assessments will be like. These assessments are designed to check your understanding of the core concepts learned throughout the course, and while you might find them challenging in places, the pass rate for this course is extremely high.


How Long is the Certificate Valid for?

IOSH Managing Safely certificates don’t expire – once you’ve got one, it will remain valid. However, IOSH recommend refreshing your knowledge every three years by taking an IOSH Managing Safely Refresher course. At ACT, we offer the Managing Safely Refresher course as a virtual classroom, eLearning, or in-house course.


Course Content

The IOSH Managing Safely course is taught across seven different modules.


Module 1 – Introducing managing safely

The first module introduces the concept of managing safely and explores the three key reasons for managing safely: moral, legal, and financial.


Module 2 – Assessing risks

Module 2 defines the key terms that will be used throughout the course, such as ‘hazard’ and ‘consequence’, as well as looking at the benefits of carrying out risk assessments and various risk rating systems.


Module 3 – Controlling risks

‘Controlling risks’ focuses on how to reduce risks by applying the ‘hierarchy of risk control’, as well as looking at how implementing risk controls can have an impact on the likelihood of an incident occurring.


Module 4 – Understanding responsibilities

Module 4 looks at laws and regulations that relate to health and safety and the potential consequences for not working within the law. It also introduces health and safety management systems and looks at the key benefits of introducing them.


Module 5 – Understanding hazards

‘Understanding hazards’ covers the six main hazard categories:

  • Mechanical
  • Physical
  • Chemical
  • Environmental
  • Biological
  • Organisational

It also looks at the most common hazards in the workplace and how to manage them, including electricity, fire, stress, manual handling, noise and more.


Module 6 – Investigating incidents

Module 6 looks at the key concepts of incident investigation, including the terms ‘incident’, ‘accident’ and ‘near miss’. It also explores the stages of incident investigation and the different types of causes.


Module 7 – Measuring performance

The final module discusses different types of performance indicators and how auditing can be beneficial.


How to take IOSH Managing Safely

IOSH Managing Safely is an extremely versatile course that can be studied in a number of different ways, so it’s easy to find a learning method that suits you.


Course Availability and Locations

You can study the IOSH Managing Safely course:

  1. Face-to-face on our health and safety classroom course, located in the West Midlands.
  2. Live on videoconferencing software with virtual classroom.
  3. Online through our health and safety eLearning platform.
  4. Alongside your colleagues at a venue to suit you with our in-house option.
  5. Using a mixture of the above formats to create your own blended learning course.


Course Duration and Format

Both the face-to-face and virtual classroom learning methods take place over three days.

The time it takes to complete this eLearning course depends on the amount of time you dedicate to your studies. The course is valid for 22 hours of Continued Professional Development (CPD) therefore you should aim to spend at least 22 hours to complete the course.


Prerequisites for Taking the Course

There are no entry requirements for taking this course, IOSH only recommend that learners have a good knowledge of the English language.


Costs and Fees Associated with IOSH Managing Safely

The cost of an IOSH Managing Safely course depends largely on the learning method you choose. IOSH also charge an additional registration fee, as of March 2023 this is £20.


Is the Course Worth It?

If you’re working in a low-risk industry and your day-to-day role gives you responsibility over other people, then the IOSH Managing Safely qualification is absolutely worth it to help you build a safer and healthier work environment for everyone.


Is IOSH Better Than NEBOSH?

IOSH and NEBOSH both serve different purposes, so which one works better for you depends on what you’re looking to get out of a health and safety course. If you’re a manager, supervisor, or team leader that wants to build up a general knowledge of health and safety in order to help you in your day-to-day role, then an IOSH course is likely to be the best option.

NEBOSH qualifications are the best choice if you want to start building a career in health and safety, or in a high-risk industry such as construction or oil and gas. Click here to read more information about the difference between IOSH and NEBOSH.


Explore our Health & Safety Courses

Now you know a little more about the IOSH Managing Safely qualification, it’s time to find a learning method that works for you.

For more information or to enquire about our In-house and Blended Learning options, you can contact our sales team via email on or give us a call.

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