Terms, definitions and books related to audits and occupational health and safety


The beginning of wisdom is calling things by their proper names. Chinese proverb

Some terms and definitions currently used in this module:


Acceptable riskrisk reduced to a tolerable level 
Accidentundesired event causing death or health and  environmental damages
Audit clienteveryone requesting an audit 
Audit conclusionsoutcome of an audit 
Audit criteriaeverything against which audit evidence is compared
Audit findingsevery deviation from audit criteria
Auditeeeveryone who is audited
Auditoreveryone who is trained to carry out audits 
Competence: personal skills, knowledge and experiences
Corrective actionaction to eliminate the causes of nonconformity or any other undesirable event and to prevent their recurrence 
Customeranyone who receives a product 
Environmentspace in which any organization functions 
Hazardsituation that could lead to an incident
Incidentundesired event that could lead to health damages
Interested party: person, group or company affected by the impacts from an organization
Nonconformitynon-fulfillment of a specified requirement
Occupational health and safety (OH&S): everything that can influence the wellbeing of the personnel in a company
OH&SMSOccupational Health and Safety Management System 
Organizationa structure that satisfies a need 
Product (or service)every result of a process or activity
Riskplikelihood of occurrence of a threat or an opportunity
Safetyaptitude to avoid an undesired event
Stakeholder: person, group or company that can affect or be affected by an organization
Supplier: an entity that provides a product


Examples of interested parties: investors, customers, suppliers, employees and social, public or political organizations


In the terminology of occupational health and safety management systems, do not confuse the following:


Remark 1: each time you use the term "improvement opportunity" instead of nonconformity, malfunction or failure, the auditee will gain a little more confidence in you.


Remark 2: the use of ISO 19011, ISO 45001 and ISO 9000 definitions is recommended. The most important thing is to determine a common and unequivocal vocabulary for everyone in the company.


Remark 3: the customer can also be the user, the beneficiary, the initiator, the client, the prime contractor, the consumer.


Remark 4: ISO 19011 version 2018 uses the terms procedure (
procedure ), record (rec ) and documented information together. We also use the terms procedure and record together with the term documented information.


For other definitions, comments, explanations and interpretations that you don’t find in this module and annex 06, you can consult: explications


explicationsBooks for further reading on internal audits:

smileyMinute of relaxation. Paganini's violin concert performed with facial expressions.


When I think of all the books still left for me to read, I am certain of further happiness. Jules Renard

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