Site Management Plan vs WHSE Management System: What’s the difference?



We are often asked by our customers what the difference is between a WHSE Management System and a Site-Specific Safety Management Plan? So how does a site-specific safety management plan differ from a Workplace Health and Safety Management System (WHSMS)?

Site-Specific Safety Management Plans Explained

As the name suggests a site-specific safety management plan (SSMP) is a localised plan used for a specific site. This plan is all about managing project safety and is often a requirement for tender opportunities. It outlines hazards, risks and processes relative to the project, addressing how the site is to be managed or monitored from day to day and throughout the duration of the work / contract.

A site-specific safety management plan should make provisions for the following:

  • Hazard Identification, Risk Management & Controls
  • Training, Information & Supervision
  • Incident Management
  • Safe Work Method Statement Management
  • WHS Entry Permits
  • Emergency Management
  • First Aid
  • Plant & Equipment
  • High-Risk Construction Work
  • Environmental Policy
  • Various Forms, Checklists and Registers such as Site Induction Checklist, Risk Assessment Form, JSA, Incident Report Form and Site Safety Rules.

WHSE Management System Explained

A workplace health and safety management system (WHSMS) provides a framework to manage the implementation of work health and safety. Guided by policies and procedures, a WHSMS sets out expected behaviours and actions and assists both employers and employees meet their respective legal obligations. The WHS Act states that a person conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU) must ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable a ‘safe system of work’. A WHSMS provides adequate documentation to do just that.


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