IOSH is a UK based, non-profit organisation which prides itself on its high standards of regulation for the health and safety profession. IOSH stands for the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health and they are the producers of the highest regarded accredited health and safety training as well as being responsible for compiling the industry code of conduct.
As the Chartered body for health and safety professionals, membership of IOSH shows that you are expertly trained and highly competent in all areas of health and safety. If you are looking for a new job or a promotion, then IOSH membership looks great on your CV and is sought after, and often a job stipulation, by many employers.
Becoming a member of IOSH not only shows that you have successfully attained IOSH accreditation, the most recognised industry health and safety training, but it also gives you access to all the training, information and material you will need to gain further qualifications. No matter what industry you work within, if your job role centres around occupational health and safety then IOSH membership is essential.
IOSH Membership Levels
- Affiliate Member
- Associate Member (AIOSH)
- Technical Member (Tech IOSH)
- Graduate Member (Grad IOSH)
- Chartered Member (CMIOSH)
- Chartered Fellow (CFIOSH)
IOSH Membership Levels Explained
There are six IOSH membership levels which culminate to Chartered Fellow (CFIOSH). This highest level is reserved for those who meet the highest levels of health and safety competence and takes years of study and accreditation to achieve. The levels of membership show the level of accreditation and competence a health and safety operative has and so by achieving a higher level, you can apply for more senior ranking jobs; roles with higher levels of responsibility.
When you first sign up to become a member of the IOSH, you will immediately join the first level of membership; Affiliate Member. You will gain access to all of the benefits of membership such as access to training and materials to help you further your career and gain additional accreditation and qualifications.
Once you hold an occupational health and safety qualification which is equivalent to the European Qualification Framework (EQF) Level 4, or any other qualification deemed as meeting the criteria by IOSH, then you will qualify to become an Associate Member (AIOSH). After gaining experience in this new role, typically 2 years full time or 5 years part time, you can apply to become a Technical Member (Tech IOSH).
Further study and accreditation, combined with more experience, will see you progress to the next membership stage; Graduate Member (Grad IOSH). In order to access this level of membership you will need to hold an occupational health and safety qualification equivalent to an EQF Level 6, or any other qualification which IOSH deem satisfactory.
In order to become a Chartered Member (CMIOSH), applicants will need to pass an open assessment and/or submit a skills portfolio. There will also be a peer review interview and the applicant will be assessed according to the accreditation route they have progressed through. After five years as a Chartered Member, and on the basis of a successful application including portfolio and interview, you can progress to the highest level of membership; Chartered Fellow (CFIOSH).
Moving through the membership levels takes time and dedication as well as hard work and study. You should be able to show career progression as each level of membership opens up new career paths and opportunities to shoulder more responsibilities. Plan ahead for the route you want your career to take so that you can choose the qualifications and accreditations which are going to be the most relevant to your role.
As well as EQFs, IOSH will often consider NEBOSH training courses as well as NVQ Level 5s and above in their selection of approved qualifications. If you already hold some of these qualifications it is a good idea to check with IOSH to see if you qualify for Associate Membership once you have joined. You can then research what is Tech IOSH in order to plan your next move.
How Do I Join IOSH?
Gaining the first level of IOSH membership (Affiliate Member) is easy. It's just a case of filling out some forms and paying the IOSH membership fees. The current fee for IOSH membership is £153 and this grants you access to the most relevant and accessible occupational health and safety training in the world. You can access all the member benefits as soon as you sign up, so you can begin your training immediately. Training courses can be accessed all over the UK and the courses can be taken online if you are based outside of the UK.
You can fill in the membership forms online or you can fill them in and send them via post. Once you have joined, if you have existing qualifications which you believe may entitled you to a higher level of membership, then you can fill in a membership category transfer form. You will be asked to list your current accreditations and also provide the original certificates as proof, so make sure you have them to hand. Once you have signed up for IOSH membership, there is an annual renewal fee to pay to keep your membership valid.
It is important to remember that from the minute you sign up for IOSH membership, no matter at what level you are, you are bound by the IOSH Code of Conduct and the Royal Charter Bylaws. It may be a good idea to familiarise yourself with both of these documents before or immediately after completing your membership application.
Membership of IOSH Benefits
Membership of IOSH is an industry recognised standard and allows you to prove to employers, current and future, that you are highly trained and competent in all areas of occupational health and safety. Benefit from the best health and safety training from an organisation with years of experience in training as well as increasing your career prospects.
IOSH membership allows you to broaden and increase your industry contacts as well allowing you to access help and advice from industry leaders. Chartered Fellows also have their voices heard on a global stage when IOSH ask their opinion on change in regulations; giving you a voice in the global movement for health and safety change.
It is quick and easy to sign up for IOSH membership and you may find that your existing health and safety qualifications already entitle you to higher levels of membership. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to broaden your career prospects and reach your potential with IOSH membership.