How to prepare for a SECOR audit

How to prepare for a SECOR audit

The SECOR, Small Employer Certificate of Recognition, is a document that is obtained after accumulating a series of requirements, specified by the Government of Alberta, to prove the company’s commitment to improve its occupational health and safety management.

If you are interested in obtaining a SECOR and enjoy the various benefits it offers, it will be necessary to complete the following steps.

Step 1: Qualify as a business


Businesses that can apply to SECOR are those that have 10 or fewer employees on their payroll in the last year, counting all those registered with the Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB-Alberta), i.e. owners, managers, volunteers, family members, full-time and/or part-time workers, administrative personnel, etc.

If you do not qualify in this group, you will have to apply for a COR. It is a different process and you can learn more about here.

Step 2: Registration and/or membership

The company must have an active account in the WCB-Alberta program. You can sign up at the time of initiating the process or use the one you have had for some time. This step is important in order to be considered for the annual premium refund, which is one of the many benefits of obtaining a SECOR.

You must also have an ACSA membership, both of which are essential to initiate the application.

Step 3: Training.

One or more full-time permanent employees must have specific training, such as:

Qualify as a business

Principles of Health and Safety Management. They can also opt for the Small Employer Health and Safety Management (SECOR) course

Standard First Aid (SFA)

Safety training directly associated with the company's line of business. Within this, there is a variety of options to suit each industry.

One full-time employee can complete all three courses or they can be divided among several workers chosen by the employer. Ensure that the individuals chosen meet leadership characteristics so that they can implement changes to the safety routine and effectively bring the knowledge from the course to their co-workers.

Step 4. Health and Safety Management System

Once you have a knowledge base around occupational health and safety methods you can warn about hazards and establish strategies to avoid those risks.

This health and safety management plan must be submitted in writing, implemented and documented in reports for a minimum period of three months prior to making the SECOR application.

In addition, this system must be kept in continuous evolution during the entire period of time in which the company has the certificate in force, since a maintenance presentation must be made every year. Likewise, a periodic record of its application must be kept during the work routine.

Step 5. Self-Assessment

The SECOR self-assessment form is a digital document that must be filled out carefully and supported with the documentation specified in the document. The submission of each of these elements is done electronically via email or digital storage sites, such as Dropbox or Google Docs.

For this point, we have two recommendations, which are:

Keep an electronic control of the occupational health and safety operation, i.e., prepare and save reports in digital files. Organize these documents in folders with specific names and label each one precisely so that it is easy to send and review. Focus on helping analysts navigate and find documents effectively and without confusion.

Do not send more documentation than necessary. We know that good checks are possible; however, analysts only require the minimum to know whether your company complies with government standards or not. The guidelines are clearly specified in the self-assessment document in order to achieve specific file reviews.

Health and Safety Management System

How is SECOR maintenance achieved?

Once the SECOR is obtained, it has a duration of three years, in which, year after year, the continuity and improvement of the methods to manage occupational safety must be checked.

In addition, periodic training of one of the employees is established as a requirement to maintain SECOR. Every three years a new training must be selected from the ACSA course list.

If any of the employees trained at the time of SECOR application leave the company it is the company’s responsibility to have another employee trained in order to maintain the company members with the knowledge necessary to maintain SECOR.

It is also important to appoint a member of the company as an “assessor” who has been trained in “Safety and Health Management of Small Employers or Principles of Health and Safety Management”. In case an external assessor is hired to submit the application, this internal appointment is also required.

Do you want to start training? At Think Safety Solutions, we guide you through the entire process

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