Risk management standard


All organisations face a range of risks that can affect strategic initiatives, operational activities, processes and projects. Health and safety risk is inherent in all University activities be they academic, administrative or commercial in nature, so the University community are, whether aware of it or not, dealing with these risks and making decisions about them every day.

The University takes its health and safety responsibilities to stakeholders, staff members and students seriously, and recognises that it is obliged to systematically manage and regularly review its work related health and safety risk profile at strategic, operational and individual levels. It appreciates that one of its core risks is compliance with its statutory work related health and safety obligations.

It is committed to not only identifying these obligations but also managing and then monitoring compliance within the institution. This is done through the University’s work-related health and safety risk management and compliance framework that determines the process and identifies the tools for realising its objectives.


All staff members and students at the University.


To provide the basis for all faculties, schools, departments and services to identify and assess risks, implement control measures and check progress as part of the broader health and safety management system.


1. A clearly defined work related Health and Safety Risk Management and Compliance Framework is to be used that is aligned to the Health and Safety Management System

2. Each faculty/service division is to:

  • Set out its health and safety objectives and actions in its annual plan
  • Allocate appropriate resourcing and
  • Monitor progress through its reporting and decision-making processes 

Risk Profile

3. An independent health and safety Risk Profile is to be completed by the Health, Safety and Wellbeing Service every three years 

Risk Register

4. Senior managers are to ensure that their faculty/service division/subsidiary level Health and Safety Risk Register are completed and/or reviewed on an annual basis, using the University Health and Safety Risk Register template

5. The Vice-Chancellor’s Deans and Directors Committee is to ensure consistency in response to the same health and safety risk category in different faculties/service divisions, and report to the respective governing committees as appropriate

6. The Associate Director Health, Safety and Wellbeing is to publish and maintain the University Health and Safety Risk Register template

7. Senior managers are to ensure that their faculty/service division/subsidiary level Health and Safety Risk Register is developed at least once per year

8. The Risk Register is to be completed in sufficient time to inform the preparation of annual plans and these are to set out the actions that will be taken to control health and safety risk

9. Faculty/service division and subsidiary Health and Safety Risk Registers are to incorporate the relevant risk categories from the University Health and Safety Risk Register template, as well as any major risk categories identified from their own operational processes 

10. Health and Safety Risk Registers are to record the:

  • Identification of risk categories
  • Assessment of risks
  • Actions for further control

11. If a net risk is assessed as “extreme” (see the health and safety risk matrix) the dean/director/chief executive must immediately seek advice from the Health, Safety and Wellbeing Service and report the risk to the Vice-Chancellor Deans and Directors Committee

Risk Assessment

12. Faculties/service divisions must implement the University’s health and safety risk assessment process for all hazards that have the potential to cause serious harm or ill health to members of the University community, using the Health and Safety Risk Assessment form.


The following definitions apply to this document:

Hazard refers to anything that has the potential to cause harm (injury or ill-health) or damage to property or equipment in connection with a work activity

Health and Safety Management System refers to a set of plans, actions and procedures to systematically manage health, safety and wellbeing at the University, including the capability to:

  • Provide a healthy, safe and well workplace
  • Identify workplace hazards, and assess and control risks as far as is reasonable
  • Promote active involvement in health and safety matters by managers, staff, students and their representatives
  • Provide information and training for staff at all levels, so they can work safely
  • Monitor, measure and review the implementation of the Health and Safety Management System

Health and Safety Risk Management and Compliance Framework is the process by which the University will systematically identify, treat and measure compliance practices

Risk assessment is the process of evaluating the risk(s) arising from a hazard(s), taking into account the adequacy of any existing controls, and deciding whether or not the risk(s) is acceptable

Risk categories are the known ‘large’ or cross-cutting health and safety topic areas of risk that are relevant to the University, which have been developed from guidance provided by regulators and adopt terminology recognised by health and safety practitioners the world over

Risk matrix refers to the rating system that maps probability (or likelihood) against consequence (or impact)

Risk profile is a high level document that lists the critical health and safety risks at the University. These risks are scored depending on the degree of harm that is likely to result if the risks are not properly controlled

Risk register is the document that records the annual process conducted by each Faculty/Service Division to monitor and review their health and safety activities to assess categories of risks and inform actions to be taken

Staff member refers to an individual employed on a full or part time basis

University means the University of Auckland and includes all subsidiaries

Key relevant documents

  • Health and Safety Policy
  • Health and Safety Risk Profile (available on request)
  • Health and Safety Risk Register template (in development)
  • Health and Safety Risk Register guidance (in development)

Document management and control

Owner: Director, Human Resources

Content manager: Associate Director Health Safety and Wellbeing

Approved by: Vice-Chancellor

Date approved: 15 October 2015

Review date: October 2018