Not that long ago, we wrote a blog post titled What Is a JHA? That post was such a big hit we've created this second post. It walks you though the steps of performing a JHA, and even includes a free downloadable guide to performing JHAs at the bottom.
This guide for performing a JHA incorporates suggestions made in OSHA’s Job Hazard Analysis booklet (OSHA 3071, revised in 2002). We think you'll find it useful when you perform JHAs at your worksite.
Performing JHAs at work will improve your safety record and general EHS compliance. So let's get started with our tips on how to do a job hazard analysis.
Before you begin the JHA for a specific job, do the following.
Safety works best when management and employees are both involved. That's true of the JHA process as well. Remember, it's their job, and they probably know it better than you do. This will also help you get their buy-in for this process and for safety in general. Plus, two sets of eyes (or more) are always better than one.
For more on getting your employees involved in all aspects of safety, check our articles on Best Practices for Safety and Health Management and the Roles of Management and Employees in Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems (OHSMS).
Go over your written records of injuries, illnesses, near-misses, and incidents that have required machine/tool replacement or repair. Then, get feedback from your employees, asking if there are things that have occurred but are not in the records. (Make it clear you're trying to make work conditions safer, not punish anyone because something hasn't been reported.)
Ask your employees if they're aware of hazards in their work area. Write them down--you can use this list later when you're performing the JHA.
Note: If a serious hazard comes to light at this point, stop what's you're doing and correct the problem before you continue with the JHA process.
It's great if you do a JHA for every job, but you should do JHAs for the jobs with the highest risks first. Take the information you've already gathered and prioritize the order in which you'll perform the JHAs.
To prioritize jobs this way, you may find the information in this Risk Management article helpful.
With these steps down, you're now ready to complete the formal JHA process, described below.
Once you've completed the introductory steps above, it's time to begin the formal JHA process for a given job. Here's how to do a job hazard analysis:
Here are some ways to do this:
Write these steps down anyway you want. It's common to create a JHA form that represents each task of a given job, plus a description of the task, the hazards, and potential hazard controls. There's a sample form for this in OSHA's JHA document. And our guide at at the bottom of this post, which you can download, includes forms you can use for this too.
Consider every possible thing that could go wrong. How could the worker be injured or be made ill? How could machines or equipment be damaged? Ask yourself the following questions:
Our downloadable guide at the bottom of this article includes a table that lists common hazard types. You may this very helpful when you're trying to identify hazards.
Write a description of each hazard in a consistent, orderly manner that will help ensure you will later put in steps to control the hazard and create the best possible controls.
A good hazard description should include the following items.
Here's a one-screen sample from Convergence Training's Online Job Hazard Analysis training course that explains the hazard description and gives an example.
Once you've written the hazard descriptions, now it's time to brainstorm some hazard controls so the hazard never really does lead to an injury or illness. And remember what we said earlier--if you've identified a severe hazard, and/or one with a great chance of causing illness or injury, address it immediately.
When you're considering a list of controls, think of the following (and in this order):
Here are a few more stray questions (and answers) about the JHA for you.
Once you've completed the JHA, start controlling them hazards, cowboy.
Yes. Our form below includes lines you can use to schedule these reviews and make sure they've happened.
Review your JHAs and, if necessary, revise them: