Tips for Recruiting a Health and Safety Professional

A picture containing person wearing a hard hat, safety glasses, reflective vest, inspecting the workplace.Many HR professionals find it difficult to manage the day-to-day functions of workplace health and safety while managing all the other elements of HR. The demands for health and safety can sometimes seem overwhelming. But growing pressure makes health and safety an element of HR management that cannot be ignored because of the risks to employees and the business.

If you are considering hiring a full-time health and safety specialist or are in the process of recruiting one now, there are a few things you can do to help improve your chances of finding the right candidate.

Understand the main objectives of the OHS role and use a good resource to help you develop or refine the job description

Consider the hazards and risks common in your workplace and the OHS initiatives your business has planned. Refer to resources that can help you develop a strong job description such as this OHS Professional Capability Framework. It includes a position profile for the diverse types of OHS practitioners and professionals, activities commonly performed, knowledge requirements and skills.

Set your compensation accordingly

The Board of Canadian Registered Safety Professionals releases a periodic salary survey that provides details on typical salary levels based on geography, experience, industry, education and more. This can be useful in deciding what strategy to take when offering compensation to a prospective OHS candidate and can help with budgeting for salary.

Don’t just advertise on Indeed

You should also consider advertising your posting where OH&S professionals frequent. Consider posting your job on LinkedIn, the Board of Canadian Registered Safety Professionals, and Canadian Society of Safety Engineering. Inquire with OHS programs at colleges and universities as some frequently circulate job postings to past graduates.

A cost-effective alternative to hiring full time

If you are not yet ready to hire a full-time OHS specialist but still need help, consider hiring a co-op student enrolled in a university or college health and safety program. They can be a terrific addition by helping with inspections, meeting minutes for your Joint Health and Safety Committee, training, personal protective equipment, and more. The government offers a substantial subsidy to companies who hire coop students. This is also a wonderful way to give back to the community. Below are a few helpful links.

Hiring the right health and safety specialist is important for your business. You want to ensure the candidate’s knowledge, skills and experience align with the goals of the role, and ultimately help your business manage workplace risk in an effective and efficient way.

Need Help?

If you are planning on hiring a health and safety specialist or are in the process of doing so and have any questions, contact WorkBright™ and we can help guide you in the right direction.


Universities that offer OHS coop programs
Metropolitan Toronto University Co-op (formerly Ryerson)
University of Toronto Occupational and Environmental Health