Manager Office worker Call centre HSR IT Worker Receptionist
image of HSR

Health and safety representative

As a health and safety representative (HSR) you have been elected by members of your work group to represent them in health and safety matters. Your role is not to 'fix' health and safety problems in the workplace, nor are you expected to be an expert on work health and safety (WHS) issues.

Your role is to represent workers in your work group and monitor that the person conducting the business or undertaking (PCBU) is ensuring health and safety standards. You will find that effective consultation is one of the most important skills you will need in your role.

Virtual Office can help you to understand the types of hazards and risks associated with the work you and your work colleagues face.The risks an HSR faces are the physical risks outlined in the rooms in the virtual office.  It is also possible that in the process of assisting the PCBU you may encounter interpersonal conflicts.

Potential Harm

Top risks:

  • interpersonal conflict
  • bullying

What can I do? (for myself )

  • Be mindful of your own health and safety and be alert to risks.
  • Seek to communicate your needs as a HSR to your employer and what they may encompass (for example you may need (estimated) time to go talk to a worker about safety issues).
  • Be reasonable in the amount of time you spend in the role. It should not consume all of your work day.

What can I do? (for my workgroup and employer)

  • Ensure you are familiar with the type of work undertaken in your workgroup and the risks that workers could be exposed to.
  • Consult with your work group members on health and safety matters.
  • Bring issues to the attention of the employer as soon as possible so they have an opportunity to rectify the problem.

What can my employer do?

  • Set the standard of expected safety behaviour.
  • Enter into consultation with workers and HSRs on health and safety matters.
  • Make policies and procedures on work health and safety matters available to workers.