What is Gap Analysis?

In the “world” of HSE (Health, Safety and Environment), Organisations are often at a juncture where they are unsure about what to do or perhaps where they are…after all, they have to make money and that’s far more important…right?  Step in “Gap Analysis”. Gap Analysis is important.

I am sure that the vast majority of you reading this post will have heard about Gap Analysis. It does what it says “on the box”. However, I would add “caveat emptor” (i.e., buyer beware). Without getting too “boring” let me elucidate on Gap Analysis relative to my specialist area (HSE).

A Gap Analysis (GA) offers an insight into what an Organisation has to do to meet specific requirements. Requirements can be based on specifications, codes or standards (e.g., ISO 14001, ISO 45001). The purpose of a GA is to reveal without “smoke and mirrors” what an Organisation has to do to achieve compliance. That word “compliance”, whilst important, is not the only measure. There might be others such as production, financial targets etc. It’s all about “plugging up the gaps” to achieve goals and aspirations.

It is always a good idea to do a Gap Analysis before setting off on the journey because retrofitting is costly. Like every successful journey, it’s important to have a map or plan like a “journey management plan”. If you are lucky, you may have some superb tools that will help guide, steer and support you, just like a “satnav”.

But we all know that having a “satnav” is not always helpful and this brings me back to that “caveat emptor”. Like in the header image, you know there are gaps but what are you trying to land? Is it realistic or are we heading towards hitting that panic button?

Keep it simple

During my years in HSE, my golden rule for Gap Analysis is “keep it simple”. All right, I am stating the obvious….I know. I’ve learnt from early experiences that “gaps are relative” and it’s important to work within the “resource bubble” that an organisation has (i.e. people, time, money etc). There is no point in offering solutions or providing “gap fillers” to be “best in class” when they are already struggling. Reminds me of that superb image of “School for the Gifted“.

Gap Analysis

School For The Gifted

So, the new standard for ISO 45001 was issued on 12th March 2018…what’s that? 

Sorry for the boring quote but here goes…

ISO 45001:2018, Occupational health and safety management systems – Requirements with guidance for use, provides a robust and effective set of processes for improving workplace safety in global supply chains. Designed to help organizations of all sizes and industries, the new International Standard is expected to reduce workplace injuries and illnesses around the world”…ref: https://www.iso.org/news/ref2272.html

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