Unit of competency details

BSBOHS503B - Assist in the design and development of OHS participative arrangements (Release 1)


ReleaseStatusRelease date
1 1 (this release)Current 10/Mar/2009

Usage recommendation:
Is superseded by and equivalent to BSBWHS502A - Manage effective WHS consultation and participation processesTerminology updated to reflect new work health and safety legislation. Unit expanded to include consultation processes and revised to focus on managing effective consultation and participation processes, rather than designing and developing participative arrangements - EQUIVALENT. 17/Dec/2012

Training packages that include this unit


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 061301 Occupational Health And Safety  

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 061301 Occupational Health And Safety  25/Jul/2008 
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Modification History

Not applicable.

Unit Descriptor

Unit descriptor 

This unit describes the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to assist in designing and developing effective participative arrangements as an integral part of systematic approaches to managing occupational health and safety (OHS). This process will result in stakeholders having real opportunities to participate in OHS processes.

No licensing, legislative, regulatory or certification requirements apply to this unit at the time of endorsement.

Application of the Unit

Application of the unit 

This unit applies to individuals with managerial responsibility for identifying, designing, developing and reviewing formal and informal processes to enable people to participate in OHS decision making. The unit also addresses influencing others from an OHS perspective and takes account of the responsibilities for managing OHS.

This unit is underpinned by BSBOHS402B Contribute to the implementation of the OHS consultation process.

Licensing/Regulatory Information

Not applicable.


Prerequisite units 

Employability Skills Information

Employability skills 

This unit contains employability skills.

Elements and Performance Criteria Pre-Content

Elements describe the essential outcomes of a unit of competency.

Performance criteria describe the performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element. Where bold italicised text is used, further information is detailed in the required skills and knowledge section and the range statement. Assessment of performance is to be consistent with the evidence guide.

Elements and Performance Criteria



1. Identify the need for OHS participative arrangements

1.1. Review OHS legislation to identify legal requirements for participative arrangements 

1.2. Identify factors that may impact on the design of participative arrangements 

1.3. Review organisational policies and procedures to identify requirements and opportunities for OHS consultation and communication

1.4. Review effectiveness of existing workplace arrangements, in consultation with stakeholders , for OHS consultation and communication

1.5. Define information and consultation requirements, in consultation with stakeholders and key personnel , for specific roles and groups

2. Assist in the design of participative arrangements

2.1. Design processes, in consultation with stakeholders, for providing required OHS information and data

2.2. Design processes, in consultation with stakeholders, to enable individuals and groups to be consulted regarding workplace OHS issues and to have input into OHS decision making

2.3. Identify and document training needs  to enable effective participation

2.4. Review recommendations for participative arrangements, in consultation with stakeholders, to ensure they meet legislative requirements and are realistic, practical and acceptable in the workplace

3. Assist in developing participative arrangements

3.1. Develop policies and procedures for participative arrangements

3.2. Identify key personnel in the introduction and maintenance of participative arrangements

3.3. Develop strategies for the delivery of training

3.4. Identify and document resources  necessary to introduce and maintain participative arrangements

4. Support the implementation of participative arrangements

4.1. Determine priorities for action in consultation with stakeholders

4.2. Develop action plans with allocated responsibilities and time lines

4.3. Provide advice and support to key personnel

4.4. Monitor implementation, in consultation with stakeholders, to ensure that participatory arrangements are effective in providing information and data to all groups and that they provide opportunity for participation in OHS decision making

4.5. Make recommendations for adjustments to the implementation as required

5. Evaluate the design and development of participative arrangements

5.1. Design the evaluation protocol  in consultation with stakeholders

5.2. Develop a plan for collecting information and data 

5.3. Analyse and evaluate information and data

5.4. Make recommendations for improvement in the participatory arrangements as a result of the evaluation findings

5.5. Provide a report to stakeholders and key personnel on the outcomes of the evaluation, and recommendations for further development and improvement

5.6. Seek feedback from stakeholders and develop an action plan for ongoing improvements

Required Skills and Knowledge


This section describes the skills and knowledge required for this unit.

Required skills 

  • analytical skills to:
  • identify areas for improvement
  • analyse relevant workplace information and data, and to make observations of workplace tasks and interactions between people, their activities, equipment, environment and systems
  • contribute to the assessment of resources needed to systematically manage OHS and, where appropriate, access resources
  • planning skills to apply continuous improvement and action planning processes
  • research skills to access relevant OHS information and data
  • numeracy skills to carry out simple arithmetical calculations (e.g. % change), and to produce graphs of workplace information and data to identify trends and recognise limitations
  • communication skills to:
  • conduct effective formal and informal meetings and to communicate effectively with personnel at all levels of the organisation, OHS specialists and, as required, emergency services personnel
  • prepare reports for a range of target groups including OHS committee, OHS representatives, managers and supervisors
  • use language and literacy skills appropriate to the workgroup and the task
  • consultation and negotiation skills to develop plans, and to implement and monitor designated actions
  • project management skills to achieve change in OHS matters
  • organisational skills to manage own tasks within a timeframe
  • information technology skills to access and enter internal and external information and data on OHS, and to use a range of communication media.

Required knowledge 

  • concept of common law duty of care
  • difference between common law and statutory law
  • ethics related to professional practice
  • formal and informal communication and consultation processes and key personnel related to communication
  • how the characteristics and composition of the workforce impact on risk and the systematic approach to managing OHS, for example:
  • communication skills
  • cultural background/workplace diversity
  • gender
  • labour market changes
  • language, literacy and numeracy
  • structure and organisation of workforce e.g. part-time, casual and contract workers, shift rosters, geographical location
  • workers with specific needs and limitations
  • internal and external sources of OHS information and data
  • key personnel, including identifying 'change agents', within workplace management structure
  • organisational OHS policies and procedures
  • language, literacy and cultural profile of the workgroup
  • legislative requirements for OHS information and data, and consultation
  • methods of providing evidence of compliance with OHS legislation
  • organisational culture as it impacts on the workgroup
  • principles of effective meetings including agendas, action planning, chair and secretarial duties, minutes and action items
  • professional liability in relation to providing advice
  • rights of OHS inspectors
  • roles and responsibilities in relation to communication and consultation for OHS committees, OHS representatives, line management, employees and inspectors
  • state/territory and commonwealth OHS legislation (acts, regulations, codes of practice, associated standards and guidance material) including prescriptive and performance approaches and links to other relevant legislation such as industrial relations, equal employment opportunity, workers compensation, rehabilitation
  • structure and forms of legislation including regulations, codes of practice, associated standards and guidance material.

Evidence Guide


The Evidence Guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the performance criteria, required skills and knowledge, range statement and the Assessment Guidelines for the Training Package.

Overview of assessment 

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate competency in this unit 

Evidence of the following is essential:

  • design and development of a participative approach to the management of workplace OHS
  • knowledge of relevant OHS legislation (acts, regulations, codes of practice, associated standards and guidance material).

Context of and specific resources for assessment 

Assessment must ensure:

  • access to workplace documentation and personnel
  • reports from other parties consulted in designing, implementing, managing and reviewing processes
  • access to relevant legislation, standards and guidelines.

Method of assessment 

A range of assessment methods should be used to assess practical skills and knowledge. The following examples are appropriate for this unit:

  • analysis of responses to case studies and scenarios
  • assessment of written reports on the effectiveness of OHS participative arrangements
  • demonstration of techniques used to encourage participation in OHS in the workplace
  • direct questioning combined with review of portfolios of evidence and third party reports of on-the-job performance by the candidate
  • observation of performance in role plays
  • observation of presentations
  • oral or written questioning to assess knowledge of how the characteristics and composition of the workforce impact on risk and the systematic approach to managing OHS
  • review of policies and procedures developed for participative arrangements
  • evaluation of action plans
  • written examples of reports on participative arrangements implemented in the workplace.

Guidance information for assessment 

Holistic assessment with other units relevant to the industry sector, workplace and job role is recommended, for example:

  • BSBOHS402B Contribute to the implementation of the OHS consultation process
  • other OHS units.

Range Statement


The range statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Bold italicised wording, if used in the performance criteria, is detailed below. Essential operating conditions that may be present with training and assessment (depending on the work situation, needs of the candidate, accessibility of the item, and local industry and regional contexts) may also be included.

Participative arrangements  are designed so that stakeholders are able to be involved in decision making that affects their health and safety. Participatory processes may include:

  • employee and supervisor involvement in OHS activities, such as inspections and audits
  • health and safety, and other representatives
  • OHS and other consultative/planning committees
  • OHS included in management, staff and employee meetings
  • procedures for reporting hazards, and raising and addressing OHS issues

Factors that may impact on the design of participative arrangements  include:

  • language
  • shift work and rostering arrangements
  • timing of information and data provision
  • literacy and numeracy levels
  • workers with specific needs
  • workplace organisational structures (for example, size of organisation, geographic, hierarchical)
  • cultural diversity
  • management approach
  • workplace culture and approach to OHS by managers, supervisors and employees

Stakeholders  include:

  • managers
  • supervisors
  • employees
  • health and safety, and other employee representatives
  • OHS committees

Key personnel  include:

  • managers from other areas
  • people involved in OHS decision making or who are affected by OHS decisions

Training needs  should be defined for:

  • managers
  • supervisors
  • health and safety representatives
  • OHS committees
  • other key personnel
  • employees generally

Resources  include:

  • financial requirements for implementation
  • personnel including time allocation
  • equipment
  • access to sources of information and data, such as:
  • guidance material to circulate to stakeholders and key personnel
  • OHS journals
  • websites

Evaluation protocol  includes:

  • criteria for evaluation
  • how the criteria will be measured
  • how the information and data will be collected
  • time period for collection of information and data

Information and data  for evaluating participative arrangements may include:

  • feedback from individuals and representatives
  • minutes of meetings
  • OHS management audits
  • questionnaires
  • workshops

Unit Sector(s)

Unit sector 

Competency field

Competency field 

Regulation, Licensing and Risk - Occupational Health and Safety

Co-requisite units

Co-requisite units 

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